When my editor suggested Pofta Buna International Café for my next review, my first question was, naturally: Am I hip enough to be allowed at Lowe Mill? But there was nothing to worry about. After they let this tubby balding guy park a minivan without incident, my confidence that we wouldn’t be tossed increased significantly.
Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment, located just west of the Parkway near downtown, is a pleasantly converted space for artists and their patrons. Including dozens of studios, several viewing galleries, and even a small theater, it’s a fascinating venue to visit and spiritually unpack.
(And of course, it’s a perfectly welcoming and happy place for all kinds of people. Just having a little fun to start.)
Pofta Buna (Romanian for good appetite) is just inside door 14 at Lowe Mill A&E, in the space formerly occupied by Happy Tummy. It’s a fast casual model in which you order and pay at the counter, and then they bring it to you when it’s ready. There are booths and tables, but there are also places to lounge. While there are other options on the menu, it’s clear the crepes are the stars.
I couldn’t swear I ever had a crepe before my visit to Pofta Buna. It’s an airy thing, looking rather like the love child of a pancake and a flour tortilla, and a suitable vehicle for both sweet and savory contents. Indeed, Pofta Buna rolls (folds?) both ways.
The Pofta Buna Menu
For lunch, Lea had the Dracula crepe (for which we received two unprompted recommendations from other patrons before we ordered, incidentally). With roasted chicken, spinach, mozzarella, cheddar, and house garlic sauce, it vanished quickly. Nathan’s vegetarian crepe subtracted the chicken and added pesto and tomatoes, and was similarly well-received. Aaron enjoyed his pizza crepe, with pepperoni, mozzarella, and cheddar.
Several specials are listed on the menu, with direction to check social media for availability day to day. You can also check the front board if you’re there. When we visited, the special was a Romanian salad with chicken soup, and that’s what I had for lunch. The salad was fresh and flavorful, with sweet bell peppers and robust feta. The long-simmered chicken soup was delicious.
Savory AND Sweet Crepes
Bring on the sweet crepes! We had a bit longer wait after we ordered dessert, but it was worth it. I went with the powdered sugar cinnamon crepe, and it was truly delightful with a house coffee. Around the table we also had a strawberry jelly crepe, a marshmallow crepe, and a Nutella crepe. There are also blackberry, grape, and apple butter options for the jelly crepe, and you can add peanut butter. The Nutella crepe is available plain, or with fresh fruit or walnuts.
Pofta Buna for Kids
Like a visit to Lowe Mill itself, a visit to Pofta Buna with small children could be a bit of an adventure. No highchairs or booster seats are in evidence, though there are several non-traditional (for a restaurant) seating areas that could accommodate little ones with supervision. There are numerous restrooms throughout Lowe Mill, at least two with changing tables and even a nursing couch located on the second floor.
We’ve left ourselves a good bit to try on a return trip, on both the sweet and savory sides. Additional desserts include house-made tiramisu and a banana split, while flatbread pizza specials and the Bucharest shaorma chicken/cabbage wrap await for lunch or dinner. Most entrees and desserts are in the $7-10 range.
Pofta Buna International at Lowe Mill
Where: Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment, 2211 Seminole Dr SW – Door 14, Huntsville
Hours: Wednesday—Thursday 12-6 PM | Friday 12-8 PM | Saturday 10AM – 6PM
Pofta Buna International on Facebook | Pofta Buna on Instagram
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