New Dessert Spot Cookies N’ Crepes Putting Sweet Smiles on Faces in Downtown JC
No, you are not hallucinating. You really did see a man in a blue furry monster costume at Newark and Jersey avenues yelling “COOKIE!”
He’s the blue mascot for new dessert joint Cookies N’ Crepes at 195 Newark Ave. in Downtown Jersey City — not that character from that kids show you might be thinking about, the owners say, but a fellow monster fan of cookies (and of course, crepes).
Former Jersey City residents and brothers Mostafa, 29, and Mohamed Solaiman, 30, opened the restaurant on Dec. 23 and have been getting a huge response from locals. With the nearest crepe spot (Kraverie, the brainchild of Lucinda Creperie and the Krave Truck) several blocks away on Mercer Street by City Hall, fellow cookie vendors Feed Your Soul (formerly of Jersey Avenue) only selling their goods online and what would’ve been their closest competition, Made With Love Artisan Bakery (just around the corner), closing down earlier this month, the two have a chance at grabbing onto a sweet portion of the local dessert market.
“We felt that Downtown was a growing community but that there was nothing there that had dessert and that’s our favorite,” says Mohamed Solaiman, who runs two pharmacies including New Horizon Pharmacy near McGinley Square but has never owned a restaurant. “We would travel into (New York City) several times a week to get crepes because where was nowhere with good, warm cookies and warm crepes.”
While Downtown Jersey City wasn’t exactly as devoid of sweet spots as Mohamed says, Cookies N’ Crepes is a welcome addition to the neighborhood. Their butter-baked cookies are $1.25 and deluxe decadent cookies like their top-seller, the triple chocolate (bittersweet, milk and dark), are $2.25. For $6.99, you can get a crepe with any number of toppings. “As long as we can fit it in the container, you can add it,” says Mohamed.
You can go into diabetic shock just looking at their list of add-ons, which includes a variety of fruits, fillings, preserves, sweet condiments, nuts, chocolates, crushed candies and more. You can even have a Cookies N’ Crepes cookie crumbled into your crepe creation, which is prepared fresh and from scratch, or choose from their recommended combos. Some of the most popular include the Celebrity Crepe with Nutella, strawberries and bananas and the Empire Crepe with New York-style cheesecake, chocolate syrup, chocolate shavings and strawberries. Both come with a scoop of ice cream. To wash it all down, you can get a shake or their popular Nutella hot chocolate.
“We’re selling 100 crepes a day,” says Mohamed, noting that they’ve already had to order another crepe maker and may eventually need a third. “It’s growing much faster than we anticipated. And with our menu-options growing so quickly, it’s hard to keep up with demand.”
Down the line, they hope to have vegan and gluten-free options available as well and are continually looking for more ideas. They’re also thinking of having their mascot do surprise deliveries to 1 out of every 100 customers (that’s right, local deliveries are free) and want to host community events, especially for young people at nearby high schools like McNair, Ferris and Dickinson.
“We hope that it serves the community and makes them happy,” says Mohamed, who notes that before adopting their slogan “The Sweet Retreat,” “We Love Putting Smiles on People’s Faces” was on the table.
“The best thing about having this business is that people come in and leave extremely happy,” he says.
Cookies N’ Crepes is open from 11 am to 11 pm Sunday through Thursday and from 11 am to 2 am on Friday and Saturday. They are located at 195 Newark Ave. For more information, call 201-434-3300 or visit their Facebook page.
Photos courtesy of Cookies N’ Crepes