Baker, confectioner and chocolate Jennifer Perry has a new home for her business The Sweet Girl in downtown Brighton.
Sweet Girl has been running for over 16 years, but now she’s open in her first brick showcase at 411 Mill Pond Lane.
Perry said the place is in the heart of the city, which already attracts families with children, and she believes her shop should be well attended.
“I’m very happy to be in the city next to Jack’s custard (and cakes). The Imagination station (open public space) is here, and the farmers market,” she said.
Previously, the showcase was occupied by the sewing and alternative business Alternations Unlimited, which moved to West Grand River Avenue.
Pam McConaughey, president and CEO of the Brighton District Chamber of Commerce, said there was a queue at the door during The Sweet Girl’s grand opening and ribbon-cutting earlier this month.
“I bought irises, their chocolates and apples, so I know their sweets are delicious,” McConaughey said.
“It’s different from everything else in town. We hope they’re very successful. They’re in a great place. It has everything for family fun. I like that we have it. It’s very family-friendly,” she added. . .
The Sweet Girl sells chocolates, caramel apples and made from scratch cupcakes, pies and other desserts, but is known for its award-winning toffees in chocolate.
Toffee with bourbon-pecan Perry won a bronze prize in 2019 in the award “Best Chocolate and Confectioners in America”, presented by the International Chocolate Salon. She was also called the favorite of the judges.
Other products at The Sweet Girl include caramel logs, peanut bars, bunches of pecans and pretzels dipped in chocolate and covered with M&M’s.
“Now we’re trying to figure out what people like, what to stock up on, how much and when. Caramel apples were popular, and we quickly sold out,” said Jennifer’s husband James Perry.
Jennifer Perry makes her own vanilla extract and sells bottles at the store. She said it takes a whole year to process the vanilla extract. The store also sells her extracts of hazelnuts, oranges, cherries and mint.
People can shop in person as well as make individual orders for parties and events for cakes, cupcakes and toffees.
In the future, the business plans to add online ordering and shipping.
Perry also plans to host children’s birthdays and chocolate events for adults.
A long history of great food
Jennifer Perry founded The Sweet Girl in 2005, and over the years the company has acquired several forms, including a wholesale business, a hot dog cart, a food truck, a tent at a farmers market and now a showcase.
Jennifer said she was a “hot dog girl” who worked in a wheelchair at Campus Martius Park in Detroit in the mid-2000s.
“Then she grew up with a food truck, and I made burgers, hot dogs, soups and chicken pie,” she explained.
She parked a grocery truck at Gilbert’s Pro Hardware hardware store in St. Clair Shores and drove it to the event.
Her bakery products and sweets were sold by major grocers in the state.
After she and her family moved to Brighton about 10 years ago, the local Simply Fresh Market became its first vendor. She then got a place on the shelves at Hiller’s, Whole Foods, Kroger and Busch’s.
She said her sweets can be bought at Simply Fresh Market, Whole Foods and Busch’s.
This is a family affair
Daughters Perry Julia, 10, and Josie, 5, love to help, and the family has set up an area in the store where children sell their work.
Julia, who also makes beaded jewelry at the store, said that when she grows up, she wants to become a baker and entrepreneur. She enjoys baking with friends while sleeping.
“I like to make crunchy sweets out of cotton candy and rice,” she said.
Her dad James said Julia created her own recipes for lemon squares and other desserts.
“She’s becoming a very baker,” he said.
Even Josie acts as the store’s official taster, her parents said.
Contact Livingston Daily reporter Jennifer Timor at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @jennifer_timar.