COURTESY OF THE BAKED BEAR
The storefront that previously served as a carry-out counter for Pi Pizzeria is soon to become the Baked Bear (6140 Delmar Boulevard)
The ice cream shop will be the first St. Louis franchise for the San Diego-based company, which has grown a huge West Coast following for its hand-scooped ice cream sandwiches. Instead of cookies, the Baked Bear sometimes subs in brownies or donuts, finishing things off by rolling the sandwich in, say, Fruity Pebbles or crumbled Oreos. There may be only six items on the menu, but the founders boast of more than 1,000 possible combinations.
Shane Stanger, the company's owner and founder, said that the Loop location will be the only one in the area for now. "We don't like to open too many locations in an area," he says. "Each one must be special."
To that end, Stanger says, the 1,300-square-foot space is getting a complete overhaul. "There will be an fun and industrial look to it with bright blues, blue lighting and a amazing reclaimed wood wall with a hand-painted logo," Stanger promises. Steve Lemley, who has a background in restaurants and marketing, has signed on as the local franchisee.
Stanger says the Baked Bear plans to open by late summer.
The Loop already has a few ice cream spots, including a Ben & Jerry's and Snow Factory STL
, but both are quite a bit west of the Baked Bear's new location. Just across the street from the Pageant, as well as a huge new apartment complex targeting college students, the Baked Bear could easily tap into a different set of customers.
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