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Gourmet cookie delivery service opens new location in American Fork

By Ashley Stilson daily Herald - | Nov 10, 2018
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Angela Pack, left, and Aubrey Fletcher, right, both bakers at chip, measure out cookie dough and place the measured portions in racks at the new shop on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in American Fork. The grand opening of the eighth location of Chip is on Saturday, Nov. 10.

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Angela Pack, a baker at Chip, measures out cookie dough at the new shop on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in American Fork.

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Ransom Larsen, a head baker at Chip, dumps a bag of flour into a container at the new shop on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in American Fork.

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Aubrey Fletcher, a baker at Chip, measures cookie dough at the new store on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in American Fork.

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Aubrey Fletcher, a baker at Chip, takes out a chunk of cookie dough to measure at the new store on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018, in American Fork.

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Sarah and Sean Wilson pose for a portrait in the new Chip location in American Fork on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. This is their eighth Chip location.

Simplicity is the key to the chocolate chip cookies at Chip, plus a few secret ingredients and chocolate from an ice cream store in Santa Barbara.

Even though the gourmet cookie company started solely as a delivery business, Chip now has eight stores in Utah and Idaho. The latest store opens Saturday in American Fork and will serve Lehi, Lindon, Pleasant Grove, Alpine and Highland.

“We just want to give everybody cookies. Everybody needs that,” said general manager Taylor Smiddy.

Inside the newest store at 356 N. 750 West are bright lights and a yellow fluorescent sign that reads “chip happens.” Behind a gold countertop are a handful of employees in white and black T-shirts who are rolling and measuring cookie dough by hand.

Each cookie weighs 6 ounces and bakes into a mound bigger than the palm of a hand. One $10 box holds four cookies, but store founder Sarah Wilson said people rarely order just one small white box.

“People see them and say ‘how do you even eat the whole thing?’ But you will,” she said with a laugh.

The iconic characteristic about Chip is that the business usually only sells one type of cookie: chocolate chip.

“We like keeping it really, really simple,” Sarah Wilson said. “I think we have a really good cookie.”

The business celebrates its second anniversary on Sunday, but it started out as an idea that came from Sarah Wilson’s pregnancy cravings.

She lived in Los Angeles at the time and her husband, Sean, struggled to find viable dessert options at 1 in the morning for her cravings.

“You have traditional bakeries where they make stuff in the morning but by the end of the evening….” He trailed off with a shrug. “I have cravings at night, I don’t have my cravings in the morning.”

They decided to start a cookie delivery business in Provo using a city rental kitchen. Within a few weeks, customers were lined up at the door.

“I felt like it had all the ingredients to be a successful business but you never know,” Sean Wilson said. “The thing that has surprised me the most is how much people have latched onto our product.”

The couple had attended Brigham Young University together and decided to move back to Utah a few months after opening the cookie business. They now manage the eight locations from Salt Lake City.

While Sean Wilson continues to work as a consultant, he said that Chip has started to take up more of his time than he thought.

“Simple is complicated sometimes,” he explained. “As a small business, you have so many people telling you how things should be done or how to be doing things better.”

About a year ago, the company started selling seasonal cookies along with the traditional chocolate chip. The business picks a new flavor to feature every month, but the unique cookies disappear from the menu at the end of the month.

Some customers are disappointed and want more options, Sarah Wilson noted. They recommend adding ice cream or creating a bigger menu. But the couple still wants to keep the company simple.

“I always liked the idea of having someone come to a menu and not have to study it,” Sean Wilson said. “We do what we do well and we try to make it good and delicious.”

The company delivers warm cookies and cold milk to customers within a five-mile radius of the store. On weekdays, the store is open from noon to 2 a.m., and on Saturday from noon to midnight.

This month features pumpkin Nutella as the seasonal cookie. While the original chocolate chip cookie sells more than the seasonal flavor, having only two flavors hasn’t hurt business.

“I think people appreciate that we focus on one thing and we do it really well,” Sarah Wilson said. “The secret to me is just using really good ingredients and that’s what makes a really good cookie.”

The chocolate chips come from the couple’s favorite ice cream shop in Santa Barbara, McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams. Other ingredients like flour and butter are mixed in an industrial-sized mixer in the shop and the dough is frozen before going into the oven.

“We like to freeze them before we bake them. It gives it a better shape. They flatten out more if they are fresh,” Smiddy said.

The 21-year-old student started working at Chip in September 2017 to earn money while studying at BYU. In May, she was promoted to general manager at the shop in Salt Lake City and helped open the location in American Fork.

“It’s my favorite job I’ve ever had,” she said. “After smelling them for so long, you don’t want to eat them. You still like them and you do eat them, but you don’t crave them until you’re gone and at home. That’s when you crave them and then you have to come back.”

The grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for the new American Fork location will happen at 6 p.m. Saturday.

The company plans to open another location in Utah, but the couple plan to keep it as a family-owned business, not a franchise. The menu will still stay the same with only two types of cookies and options for delivery, catering or to buy in-store.

“People love dessert here,” Sarah Wilson said. “It’s an experience that’s so unique. You’re at home, someone knocks on the door and hands you warm cookies and they’re delicious.”

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