When it comes to fast-casual dining, many people expect to compromise flavor for value, or quality for speediness and convenience. Restauranteur Jack Nuchkasem believes that diners shouldn't have to sacrifice any of these qualities to enjoy a fast-casual meal.
His newest CrushCraft location at The Star in Frisco offers affordable meals that feature authentic Thai flavors and ingredients, plus a casual environment that's perfect for a quick lunch break or dinner out with friends and family.
Kay Ridgway: From Line Cook to Executive Chef
After over twenty years in hotel/hospitality management, Jack wanted to try his hand in the restaurant industry. He had a distinct vision for his restaurant that combined high-quality food with authentic ingredients, plus a fast-casual atmosphere that would make his guests feel right at home.
His Thai roots and passion for authentic food led him to the opening of the first CrushCraft in Uptown in Dallas. CrushCraft's original menu was inspired by Jack's family recipes, but he found it was hard to gain repeat customers, partially due to many people’s hesitancy to partake in the spicy dishes served at the restaurant. In search of that perfect balance of spice and flavor, Jack turned to CrushCraft's partner and Executive Chef; Kay Ridgeway.
After moving to the US at just nineteen years old, Kay started working as a line cook in casual chain restaurants before moving up hotel banquet halls and other larger culinary events. Kay took a break from work to finish her culinary certification in 2015, and used her newfound qualifications to transition in the restaurant industry.
She stumbled upon the newly opened CrushCraft and started working for Jack as a line cook. Thanks to her Thai heritage, Kay picked up on dishes quickly and easily. After about six months, Jack promoted her kitchen manager and she started tweaking dishes, much to the delight of Jack and his customers.
One year later, Jack asked Kay to become a partner in the business. She loves cooking Thai food and working with Jack, making the team's culinary partnership a great success.
Thai Fusion with a Dedication to Quality
Nestled near the corner of Gaylord Parkway and Cowboys Way in Frisco, CrushCraft offers a unique dining experience that's hard to come by anywhere else in Texas. The menu features a variety of traditional Thai dishes including curries, “Kap Khao” rice bowls, noodles, and more.
Owner Jack is committed to quality and convenience, which means your favorite dishes will taste exactly the same each time you visit CrushCraft. Their from-scratch fare is also ready to enjoy in five minutes or less from the time you place an order.
Jack and Kay know that some like it hot, so many of the menu features can be customized by “spice level” and there's even a Spice Bar in the dining room so guests can turn up the heat with a variety of housemade sauces and spice blends.
Along with their unique appetizers and main entrees, CrushCraft offers a variety of craft sodas, beers, and specialty cocktails to sip on during your next visit.
You can also enjoy a traditional Thai Tea with your meal, or opt for something stronger like the “Kohconut”, a rum cocktail that's served up in a fresh coconut.
Standing Apart from the Competition
Along with CrushCraft's dedication to consistency and efficiency, comes deep respect for the Earth and our environment.
I want to do everything I can to respect the Earth. Every time I make an eco-friendly switch in one of my restaurants, I think about my future grandchildren and how important it is that we preserve this planet for future generations.
– CrushCraft Owner, Jack Nuchkasem
When you sit down to eat, you may notice that each dish comes in a paper bowl. These bowls are compostable, plus they make it easy to take back some tasty leftovers without opting for extra styrofoam boxes and plastic bags.
Crushcraft's single-use cutlery is made from potato starch, and paper straws ensure that the restaurant's carbon footprint is much smaller than most other fast-casual eateries.
Another vision that Jack brought to life through CrushCraft is a dedication to authenticity. Many of CrushCraft's dishes include traditional Thai ingredients that you won't find on most other fusion menus. In fact, CrushCraft is the only Thai restaurant in the area that uses authentic Thai Eggplants in their green curry.
Kay and Jack source a number of fresh ingredients including lemongrass, Thai basil and lime leaves to keep their food authentic and deliver a true taste of Thailand whenever possible. Jack has even worked with local farmers in Flower Mound to gather the ingredients for CrushCraft's incredible offerings.
Give Thai a Try
CrushCraft's Frisco location has partnered with GrubHub and Favor to deliver fresh Thai flavors right to your home or office. Their new catering menu is also great for parties, corporate events and more.
Next time you're looking for a quick and delicious bite in Frisco, stop by CrushCraft to enjoy authentic eats that deliver on flavor and quality!