NEW CANAAN, Conn., -- After a slight hesitation, Sydney Watchmaker decided on her favorite yogurt flavor at the new Peachwave in New Canaan.
“English Toffee,” she said Thursday afternoon as some of the nine friends gathered with her whispered suggestions at the week-old New Canaan frozen yogurt business.
The business, located at 11 Forest St., opened April 17. Manager Ryan Ventura said business has been steady with some flavors already moving to the forefront among customers.
“Kids like cookies and cream, and adults are devouring the salted caramel and cheesecake,” he said, before adding that cotton candy is also a big seller for the younger set.
Ventura has made himself at home in the new frozen yogurt shop, but he comes to retail management from a slightly different background. He was a pastor at Walnut Hill Community Church in Bethel, working with high school and college students. Last year he decided to take a break from the church and resigned his position. He was quickly approached by church member Gregg Roberts, who owned the Wilton Peachwave store, to see whether he was interested in coming on board at that location.
However, it was his 7-year-old daughter (the middle of three children ages 3 to 10) who thought he should consider job.
A Danbury resident, he often made trips to the Peachwave outlet there because his children are big fans. She suggested not long after he left his church position that he should consider Peachwave, he said with a laugh.
“It was funny, when I was looking for a new job, my daughter was like, ‘Maybe you could work at a Peachwave.' (I said) 'Sorry sweetie, it just doesn’t pay enough money being a cashier,’ and I think a couple of days later, Gregg gave me a call,” he said.
The family-oriented nature of the business that attracted him, Ventura said.
“It wasn’t that we were trying to sell frozen yogurt. What we were able to do is create a family experience, those old traditions of families gathering together to enjoy dessert,” he said. “This place allows that to happen.”
The business is one of 80 that the Oklahoma-based company has or will open soon.
The store has a relaxed vibe to it, with seating in the front of the store and a back area that is geared toward students, Ventura said.
Eight separate self-serving areas are built into a wall that serve two individual flavors each, plus those two flavors can be combined to create another flavor, Ventura said. Customers can also add many different toppings, he said.
The store will have a grand opening from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday with live music and raffle with gift cards to local businesses and Peachwave. There will also be a clown from 1 to 3 p.m.
The official ribbon cutting will be 3 p.m. Friday.