|The Sweet Shop satisfies even the sweetest tooth in the Big Apple.|
If you venture about a 7 to 10-minute brisk talk from the subway toward the edge of the Upper East Side, I promise, the journey will be well worth the trek from the 6 train. Far east, past First Avenue on 73rd Street, lies a luscious treasure known as The Sweet Shop. Owned and operated by Kelly Jaime, aka “The Candyman” ––– this confection-filled boutique can satisfy even the sweetest tooth in New York City. Jaime may not have magical powers or live as a character in a hit song, but he happens to be a real Upper East Sider with a passion for creating memories, and of course, candy.
Today, we get down and sugary with with the Candyman himself, while he tells us all about his sweet life in the Big Apple.
|The Candyman and the Pie Guy pose among the sweetness with an ice cream cone and a lollipop.|
TK: Why did you pick the Upper East Side for The Sweet Shop?
KJ: My wife Glyn and I are downtowners living uptown for more than 10 years. We were always going to the East Village or Brooklyn to keep up with the food action. The question we kept asking ourselves was, “Where can we get a delicious ice cream around here?” There seemed to be nothing that was fun or open late uptown. So, after two years of asking why, we decided to do it ourselves.
TK: What’s your sweetest memory?
KJ: I’ve got a lot of them, but my favorite revolves around my grandmother, who worked for Walt Disney. We spent a lot of time at Disneyland and that’s where it happened: I fell in love with ice cream.
TK: What are you obsessed with right now?
KJ: I’m obsessed with making sure everything in the store is perfect. I walk the store every morning and make adjustments. I’m obsessed with the experience you haven’t had yet. The devil is in the details!
|“The Devil is in the details.”|
TK: Does The Sweet Shop appeal to everyone, or just sugar aficionados?
KJ: There’s truly something for everyone. We just added a vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free ice ream from Alchemy. We also carry certified nut-free chocolates. As for those with dietary restrictions, we’re doing our best to accommodate and we expand upon request, but only when we find something extraordinary.
TK: How do you respond to the anti-sugar brigade?
KJ: Part of our business plan was developed around moderation. Our shakes aren’t bigger than the kids who drink them. We offer a mini ice cream cone too. We don’t supersize, but our craving for sweets isn’t going anywhere. Quality is our number one priority –– we want to sell with a whole heart.
TK: Personal go-to dessert?
KJ: Marshmallows dipped in chocolate with cashews.
TK: What would I be surprised to learn about you?
KJ: I’m a cat lover.
TK: If you’re headed out for a night on the town, where will you eat dinner?
KJ: The Ukrainian National Home on 2nd Avenue and 9th Street –– best pierogies, potato pancakes and blintzes. I love a NY steak experience, so it’s a tie between Ben & Jacks and Peter Luger. I’m also a fan of the tacos at Tacombi at Fonda Nolita.
TK: What’s the one thing you’d like everyone to know about The Sweet Shop?
KJ: My wife Glyn and I are equal partners in this venture, but if you pulled back the curtain, you wouldn’t see me. You’d see Glyn. I’m just Oz’s big head, but Glyn is the real Oz. The magic, the brilliance of design, comes from her.
|The Candyman Kelly Jaime and his wife Glyn are partners in The Sweet Shop, but he insists that the magic comes from her.|
The Sweet Shop
404 E 73rd St
New York, NY 10021
Thanks to Scott McCully for the photography in this post.