The Cravory: whipping up a tasty new cookie revolution
by FRANK SABATINI, Jr.
May 22, 2014 | 1868 views | 0 0 comments | 29 29 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cookies are displayed elegantly at The Cravory’s first retail outlet. 		        Courtesy photo
Cookies are displayed elegantly at The Cravory’s first retail outlet. Courtesy photo
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Fresh rosemary, balsamic vinegar and black pepper are ingredients that bring to mind roasted chicken. Or perhaps leg of lamb. But toss them into a batch of cookies and you end up with a baking business that attracts customers from around the globe, just as the owners of The Cravory in the Midway District have discovered.

“It was one of the first cookie recipes we created. And to this day it’s among our most popular flavors,” said Adam Koven, who started the avant-garde cookie company in 2009 with fellow Tucson transplants Derek Jaeger and Nate Ransom, all graduates of colleges in Arizona and each under 30 years old.

Until recently, the trio operated out of a rented kitchen in Miramar, selling their crafty treats exclusively online and at farmers markets, both of which they still do. In February, however, they opened their first retail outlet at 3960 W. Point Loma Blvd, Suite G, in what was formerly a yogurt shop.

The space was given a clean, chic makeover by acclaimed local designer Michael Soriano.

“He did an amazing job by going a lot more boutique than what you would expect from a bakery,” said Koven, referring to a mostly white color scheme that embodies restored antique pieces and brown and beige cork flooring meant to look like chocolate-chip cookie dough.

Also, instead of displaying entire batches of cookies in a traditional shelving unit, a clear Lucite box showcases the day’s flavors in single form, while the freshly baked stockpiles are kept beneath in stylish drawers.

The Cravory has developed more than 90 secret cookie recipes that range from sweet to savory. About 16 different types surface on any given day. Signature flavors include Almond Joyous, Birthday Cake, Salted Caramel Cream, Pancake & Bacon and the famous Rosemary-Balsamic, which the owners term as “the most sophisticated in the cookie jar.”

The inventive recipes don’t stop there. On the first of each month, six new flavors are introduced. Throughout May, for instance, customers can seize upon cookies named Red Red Wine, Key Lime Tart and Macadamia Mocha.

The summer months, adds Koven, will likely usher in a “Kentucky mule” made with bourbon-infused caramel, plus a “jelly donut” flavor and a green-sprinkled cake batter cookie representing The Hulk for Comic-Con International in July.

The cookies sell for $2 a piece and can be purchased also in gift boxes of a dozen or two dozen, either in single flavors or mixed.

It is Jaeger who wears the baker’s hat in the business after majoring in nutrition at the University of Arizona. Koven and Ransom oversee the financials and marketing efforts, although Koven is no stranger to the oven.

“I had a lot of family baking time when growing up, and my great-grandmother was an excellent baker,” he says.

From a branding standpoint, The Cravory is the envy of other entrepreneurs. Since building a loyal customer base in San Diego over the years at farmers markets in Ocean Beach, La Jolla, Little Italy and Hillcrest, the cookies have made their way into major airports in New York, Orlando and Minneapolis.

Locally, they retail at Lazy Hummingbird and Lighthouse Ice Cream & Yogurt, both in Ocean Beach, as well as several other outlets throughout the city.

“We also ship all over the world to military and customers traveling abroad,” adds Koven, revealing that the company will inevitably expand.

“We’re trying to determine where to open a second location in San Diego, and we want people to fall in love with a new flavor every time they visit The Cravory,” he said.

To place phone or online orders, call (619) 795-9077, or visit www.thecravory.com.
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