Retail Spotlight: Brigadeiro Bakery

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Across the city, more and more foodservice shops are opening to serve a singular product type. This isn’t a new idea, but it has certainly become the trend among bootstrapping entrepreneurs looking to get started in this competitive and pricy city.

It isn’t always successful, but when it’s done right, it can be great! This month, we are taking a close look at Brigadeiro, a small shop in the north west corner of SoHo serving sweet Brazilian specialties.

Brigadeiro is both the name of the shop and the name of the sweet, condensed-milk confection that the store specializes in. The shop, which seats fewer than 12, is simply and attractively decorated with tile, blonde wood, and splashes of color in the packaging and product display. The narrow space with minimal distraction draws you right in; you know immediately what the place is about. The display case sits center in the service counter showing off the namesake treats:

Chocolate. Pistachio. Chocolate+Vanilla. Banana Cinnamon. Oreo Cookie. The store has a rotating selection of brigadeiro that range from the modest and traditional to modern and approachable. At its core, the same product, but dressed differently to great effect. This is the way to do a single-product shop. Everything we tried was delicious, and the packaging was as much a feast for the eyes as the candy was for our sweet tooth.

The confections were definitely great. However, from the business standpoint, there is a lesson just as worthwhile to learn from the Brigadeiro shop: high-value and creative alternatives to traditional items of expense. Brigadeiro is turning butter, sugar, and condensed milk into $2.33-per-piece, high-margin products. Instead of sinking capital in static, expensive branded packaging, Brigadeiro uses attractive printed paper to wrap boxes and seal with a branded sticker—an inexpensive, dynamic approach. And ultimately, instead of trying to start an enterprise that demands a bigger space, a broader concept, and a larger staff, Brigadeiro is staying small and staying focused on making the best Brazilian candy in the city.

Brigadeiro Bakery is located on Sullivan Street at the corner of West Houston.  To read more, click here.

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