As the cupcake business is changing and news of once-thriving chain Crumbs closing most of its stores and reorganizing, dessert don Warren Brown is trying something new with his Cakelove brand.
The lawyer-turned-baker launched Cakelove in Washington, DC back in 2002 and expanded to multiple areas and locations over the years.
When AlwaysAList.com spoke to Brown before the Party for the Senses at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, he talked about how his Cakelove brand was shifting.
“The business has changed a lot in the last couple of years and what we’re doing now is focusing on our wholesale business and making a cake in a jar. We’re making a cake in a jar all in a recyclable, BPA-free plastic jar that has a resealable lid. The purpose of the product is really to meet what customers are looking for,” he told us.
In an attempt to create a product that completely met the needs of his clientele, Brown said they did extensive research on how effectively thrive in this emerging business climate.
“We did focus groups and asked and did listening sessions and went around and asked, people said we love your cake maybe change this and that, but above all we want the icing. Give us the cream cheese icing and give us some way to handle a cupcake a little more easily,” Brown explained. “The topple and bobble and fall over are messy, but I take one bite and feel invested in it. So we took all of that info and said if we do the icing and put it in a jar, with a resealable lid; people can have dessert on their own terms.”
In addition to a new product, Brown is working on a new approach. Instead of focusing on having individual stores, the dessert whiz they’re going for a more mass market approach. “We’re moving away from retail into wholesale,” he offered.
Cakelove is currently selling between 2,500 and 3,500 jars a month and is currently being carried at Whole Foods stores in the Washington, DC and Maryland region.
The company will maintain two of its stores in the area.