WeHeartOTR Interview: Sara Bornick with StreetpopsPosted: May 24, 2012
Though we are having our own adventure living in OTR, there are also others that are having one too, namely many of the businesses in the area. We decided to start looking at some of these businesses and conduct some interviews. Enjoy!
Chad Garrett: So why popcicles?
Sara Bornick: That’s the first question everyone asks me! I started off wanting to do ice cream then realized that there is a lot of competition for ice cream. There are tons! Graeters, Aglamesis Bros., Dojo Gelato. So, I wanted something a little bit different and thought popsicles would be fun. Everyone remembers eating pops as a kid, so I figured why not.
CG: What makes street pops different than other popsicles?
SB: I think our attention to detail and the ingredients that we use. We use top quality ingredients- less sugar, no artificial flavors, no preservatives, no high fructose corn syrup. We also do a lot of crazy combinations.
CG: How do you arrive on your flavors?
SB: I get inspiration on everything from traveling to eating out at restaurants to watching cooking shows to reading magazines and just trying new things, failing and then trying again.
CG: Why did you choose Main Street in OTR for your business instead of say, Northside?
SB: I live about 4 blocks from here. The space that we are in right now used to be Fork Heart Knife, which I loved. I used to go there once, if not twice a week to get carry out or to eat there. I would sit inside or outside and would say to myself this would be a great place for opening a shop. We started selling from a deli downtown and quickly out grew that, so when this became available I decided I was doing it and jumped at the opportunity. I don’t know if I was ready to open a shop but now that I am in here I am thankful to have somewhere to call my own to sell out of, and its been really great so far.
CG: Do families frequent your store?
SB: We get such a great mix of people. We get people from the neighborhood, we get families that live down here with kids in their strollers, we get people coming from all different parts of the city that have heard about it, from Findlay Market last year and different festivals. It’s just random really, its exciting to see the word is getting out. People are coming from everywhere to visit so, yeah, it’s really nice. We might even open different locations across the city, you never know…
CG: Speaking of different locations, what are your future plans with street pops?
SB: We will definitely be adding to the menu – we are up to 50 or 60 flavors right now and that’s my fault because I get bored with them. It’s not that they are boring, but I just like trying new stuff. I don’t eat them every day but I am sure you come in here and you see a couple of flavors and say to your self, I have never heard of any of those, so, we are definitely going to have to try that.
We had two carts last summer and now we have five carts. The largest one goes to Findlay Market and the others are used for different events. I’d like to expand to different areas of the city and keep this store the source of production, so I would make everything here and hopefully sell them in other areas of Cincinnati – not just store fronts but other stores as well. But, we will see how well and quickly that happens.
CG: Custom flavors?
SB: Absolutely! We do catering and events and parties with our push carts, so weddings, birthday parties and all sorts of different events, customer parties, office appreciation days. We have some custom flavors as well. I love being creative so when someone comes to me with an idea I want to make that work. For example with the Beet Blood Orange Flavor, we ran a contest at our grand opening. We ran it on Facebook and this is the flavor that won and now it is one of my favorites! We did a wedding last year and the bride came up with a Honey Bourbon Vanilla that was pretty awesome and that will probably be on our menu here in a little bit because it went over pretty well.
CG: So how often do you rotate your flavors?
SB: We always have a chocolate flavor whether that is a chocomint or chocolate sea salt or chocolate chili pepper, some sort of chocolate. We like to have at least two or three staple fruit- based and the other ones rotate depending on the season and what’s available at the store and what’s popular at the time. If we go to the market when it’s 90 degrees out, we will probable have more fruit flavors available because the cream- based street pops can be a bit heavier.
CG: Any final thoughts?
SB: Oh! On Final Fridays in OTR we do some fun stuff. Each Final Friday at least through August we invite different food trucks to our store and have a DJ sitting in the kitchen and have a party. It’s nice to be able to offer the community a place to come and hang out.