When local entrepreneurs partner, everyone wins.
The entrepreneurship bug has bitten more than just a few over the past decade, and the numbers continue to climb. With more than 500,000 new start-ups rolling out each month, small business owners are vital contributors to our economy, but they haven’t reached this peak alone.
Two local culinary entrepreneurs — one an acclaimed James Beard Nominee chef and the other a mompreneur with a dream — are proving this fact to be true.
Los Angeles-born baker Shiana White, who now calls Atlanta home, has teamed up with renowned culinary genius and Vinings local G. Garvin, to take her made-to-order baking business, A Haute Cookie, to the next level. She wants her unique line of customizable gourmet goodies to be a household name; while Garvin is enjoying White’s exclusive creations as additions to his brand.
“He’s known in the food industry, so the exposure that he gives my product means the most to me,” says White, whose company was built around the concept of cookie cravers being able to create their own cookies based on their whims.
A Haute Cookie lets sweets lovers choose their favorite cookie dough, as well as an array of high-end add-ins, including chocolates, candies, dried fruits, and nuts. Brownies, ice cream sandwiches, cookie cakes and more are also on A Haute Cookie’s menu. White sums it up best, “you don’t have to walk up to a bakery case and choose what’s already prepared. Here, you can create whatever you’re in the mood for at that moment.”
Although the mom-of-four, who started her cookie company in 2012, was experiencing quite a bit of success from Haute’s inception — inquiries from Sugar Factory in Las Vegas, numerous orders that equated to sold-out treats, and enough capital to open a certified commercial kitchen in Hapeville — it was chef Garvin’s interest in her eats, in 2014, that catapulted her progress as an entrepreneur.
“My cookies were in terminal A at Hartsfield-Jackson airport when he came across my product. [Garvin] has a restaurant in the same terminal. He reached out to me and told me that I had an amazing cookie, and he asked me if I would like to be a part of a show that he was having in Buckhead,” explains the former corporate professional.
“Since then, he asked if I could do a private cookie line [called Crunch Gourmet Cookies] for him. We now have six cookies and cookie crumbles that sell on his website marketplaceonline.co.”
The duo are working to make an even bigger impact on the consumer market.
“A haute cookie has what I think is the “ABSOLUTE BEST COOKIE ” I’ve ever eaten. Shiana and these cookies deserve their place at the top of the culinary world and I will do all I can to make that happen,” says G.Garvin.
And, White, whose customers have included Floyd Mayweather, is welcoming every moment of Garvin’s mentorship as he cultivates and supports her business.
“I’m learning a lot. And, seeing him manage several different businesses and his family is very inspirational to me. He’s great at what he does.”
With Garvin’s continued guidance blending with her own professional development, she envisions that her company will stay on a fast track to success. G. Garvin agrees. “As a guy who has been in the food/restaurant business for over twenty years I have found that to achieve entrepreneurial success one must have loyalty, integrity, passion, pride, and the will to produce a great product. A hand up is also necessary. I’m proud to be able to be that for Shiana.”
In a few years, White predicts big things for herself. “I see myself with a couple of stores here in Atlanta and other cities, and my products in grocery stores.”
The plan for A Haute Cookie is to eventually have store fronts in Atlanta and beyond as well as develop more products for retail sales. Also look for A Haute Cookie food truck coming this summer. For now, you can grab A Haute Cookie from ahautecookie.com, and Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, Market Across the Street, CaJa Popcorn, and Lucy’s Market.