In 2009, Andrew (Sweet Andy) found himself in a position like so many others at that time in our past; the economy was quickly spiraling downward and he had left his job in the financial services industry. Although Andy had an MBA in Banking and Finance and had even written a book entitled, “A Guide to Taking Control of Your Investments”, he found himself to be disenchanted with the financial industry and left to pursue “other work.” The “other work” that Andrew pursued was with the Church and did not provide financial support for the family. During this time Andy and his wife, Lissa, struggled to find other forms of income. They did what they could for themselves and their five children but often it was not enough. But there were many family and church friends who did help in many ways. Andrew and Lissa’s Church Friends and Family helped them by fixing things around the house that needed repair (such as a faulty furnace); some people kept getting the family car running when it seemed to have already run its course and others even filled their cupboards with food.
It was a very difficult time for Andrew and Lissa but yet they felt blessed to have such wonderful friends. In Andy’s words, “ I wanted desperately to give back to everyone for all that they were doing for me and my family, but I didn’t really know how to do it seeing that we didn’t have much money. Andrew was a bit of a cookie monster himself and began making cookies for the kids. One day he felt as though he should start baking cookies as “Thank You’s” for all of those people who had helped them during this time.
Andy worked for many weeks trying to create a unique and perfect chocolate chip cookie that he could be proud of; proud enough of them that he could give back to those who were helping him and his family in so many ways. It was his way of saying, “thank you.” He and Lissa started handing out platters of cookies to those friends and family who had helped them. Everyone had the same shocked reaction; first, that Andy had actually baked the cookies himself, and second, that they were so delicious and different than any other cookie they had tasted. Andrew’s friend Brian Kraus owned the Sunset Deli in Westhampton Beach. Brian and Andrew sat down and Brian offered suggestions and advice on how to begin selling these cookies to stores. After Brian’s advice, Sweet Andy’s Cookies were placed in his store for sale. He quickly sold out, asked for more and the start of a new business, Sweet Andy’s Cookies, was born.
The rest is history but far from finished. Andrew and Lissa have been wholesaling the cookies to many stores and delicatessens in The Hamptons, out at the end of Long Island, New York. This past year they opened up a small retail bakery in Westhampton Beach, NY that features eleven different flavors of Sweet Andy’s Cookies, among other freshly baked items. The “Thank-You Cookie”, regardless of which flavor you choose, has a taste that you will not soon forget (mainly because you will want to keep ordering more of them) and there is a little bit of gratitude and kindness baked into each one. During this Christmas Season we have so much to be thankful for; our faith, our families and our friends. We hope that when you get together with those you love that you will remember this true story of thanksgiving and thankfulness and that it will put a smile on your face. And if you happen to be able to enjoy a Sweet Andy’s Cookie while you are remembering this story, it will make your smile just a little bit bigger…
Westhampton Beach, NY 11978