By Hope S. Philbrick
Snap to It! Mother-Daughter Baking Team Settles into a Brick-and Mortar-Storefront
Susansnaps, a gourmet ginger snap cookie company, grew from a tummy-comforting snack into a mother-daughter business that recently opened its first retail location in Sandy Springs. Laura Stachler (who previously owned Laura’s Divine Desserts) first developed Susansnaps as snacks for her husband and daughter Susan Robbins, who were undergoing chemotherapy treatments within the same year. While Laura perfected the recipe, Susan designed logos and packaging. The ginger snaps became popular and took over Laura’s small baking company. They are named Susansnaps in memory of Laura’s sister Sue (who died from Hodgkin’s in 1977 at age 28) and in honor of her daughter Susan (who beat Hodgkin’s at age 22). For the past five years, the mother and daughter have worked out of a commercial kitchen and grown the business beyond their wildest dreams. Fans of Susansnaps include Martha Stewart, Rachel Ray and Chef Bobby Flay. The Sunday Paper asked the women to share more details.
Was a retail location always part of your business plan?
Laura: Actually not. We had a really nice online business, attended gift shows, had corporate clients. The customers really let us know they’d like a place where they could come to us to pick up products directly. Last spring, we started looking for a location.
Susan: It’s really nice to create more of a shopping experience. Rather than place orders or call, people can come in, look around and get a personal touch.
What are your products? What’s most popular?
Laura: On the ginger snap side, we offer the original Susansnaps, plus delicious citrus and cocoa snaps. We have seven different made-from-scratch layer cakes in a variety of flavors. We also have spiced nuts and treats. Everything is made in the shop by us.
We have a divine chocolate fudge cake. The recipe for our banana nut cake has been in the family for more than 60 years. Susan and I came up with a Susansnap spice cake with a fabulous lemon cream cheese frosting that’s surprised us in that it’s become our very biggest seller. It’s got five spices on the bottom and a fresh, tangy lemon zest on top. Even chocoholics are over the top about it.
How did you develop the original Susansnaps?
Laura: Oh gosh, we worked at that for a long time. The inspiration was that ginger is a natural stomach soother, and at that time, that was the purpose we wanted for it. Little did we know the little treat would be so huge. It’s got a little crunch on the outside, texture on the inside, and gets rave reviews.
Susan: Our first big order was for 30,000 cookies. We hand scooped all of them, which took a couple weeks. Now we do 8,000 a day. At the beginning, we never could have imagined growing this much. We never set out to be where we are.
You also founded the Susan Carver Foundation?
Susan: Yes, 10 percent of sales go to cancer research and patient gifts. We donate bags of cookies to cancer patients in local hospitals during the holidays. SP
Susansnaps is located at 229 Hilderbrand Dr., Sandy Springs. www.susansnaps.com.