If ‘rumbling’ was a language, then the collective rumbling of the stomachs of UCI students wouldn’t just say ‘We have no food court and we’re hungry.’ Rather, a more accurate translation is, ‘We have no food court, we’re cheap, hungry and we want it now.’
Luckily for UCI students, the The Cravery, located at Sand Canyon and Irvine Center Drive, speaks ‘rumble,’ as well.
A quick drive from UCI, The Cravery’s casual yet inviting atmosphere was immediately soothing to the rumble my stomach was speaking. Instead of the sandwiches, wraps or burgers I expected to find, I was greeted by a display of savory pies and salads.
In all honesty, I was slightly apprehensive about how my taste buds were going to respond to pies filled with different transcontinental flavors and themes that are intended to be eaten with your hands in the name of gourmet dining on-the-go.
But the originality and inventiveness of savory pies is exactly what co-owner and founder Brian Khoddam is going for. While sampling the meat pies of South Africa and spending time with his wife’s family, Khoddam realized the convenience behind the pie-to-go theory and recognized the concept as one that had yet to reach the United States. As opposed to pot-pies that need to be served in a container due to the runny, soup-like filling, these pies are roughly the size of a large fist and are designed to be eaten with the hands, exactly like sandwiches.
For the next two years Khoddam and his uncle, Hormoz Ghaznavi, a professional baker, would develop the concept of The Cravery