‘The Cookie Guy’ Opens Boutique Bakery in Berryville

Berryville shoppers may soon find themselves following their noses to Crow Street as the enticing aroma of freshly baked cookies draws them to the Town’s newest business. Chef Dan Lantonio (Aka. The Cookie Guy) will open his baking boutique at 23 Crow Street in early February offering a carefully selected menu of handcrafted baked goods that are, “Baked, Packaged and Delivered on the Same Day.”

Dan’s path to becoming The Cookie Guy is a mixture of culinary passion and entrepreneurial drive. “Growing up, my family was involved in all sorts of franchise businesses, from dry cleaners to restaurants and at one point we had four McDonald’s franchises.” That business acumen rubbed off on Dan. He attended the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City for three years and after graduating, Dan stayed in NYC to work in the catering business on Wall Street. From there he advanced to Pastry Chef at Butter Restaurant, a well known Soho eatery that caters to many celebrities and serves desserts to hundreds of customers every night. “From Butter I moved on to a restaurant that caters to just desserts called The Chocolate Room in Brooklyn.” His work in big city commercial operations provided great experience, but his desire was a smaller more personal experience. “I’m too laid back,” he said, “I don’t like big companies that much and I did my time in restaurants in New York, so I moved to Virginia to start something on my own.”

He launched his business six years ago as a personal chef with several families in the Great Falls, McLean area.Β  As a personal chef, Dan visits his clients homes and prepares several days of meals for them. His work with his existing client base also gave him the opportunity to prepare specialty cakes and corporate gifts. “All of my clients have their own businesses and they have clients so they asked me what I could do for them for holiday gifts.” Dan started leveraging his library of recipes to develop tiered gift packages for the holidays and his business started to grow in a different direction.

Two years ago, “The Cookie Guy” was born. “Almost all of my clients now are corporate,” Dan said. He still maintains his personal chef clientele but he is pinning his hopes on The Cookie Guy. Dan said he has seen a tremendous growth in his business not only during the holidays, but year round as realtors and all manner of business people use his product as a treat for meetings. “I sell a cookie pack with three small cookies, individually wrapped in a nice bag and deliver them to realtors and insurance agents to hand out at meetings and events. They are always a big hit.”

Soon to be home of The Cookie Guy

As his business grew, his home based operation was becoming more and more cramped. Finally it reached the point that Dan needed to look for a space to open a commercial kitchen. The cost of retail space in Northern Virginia stalled Dan’s efforts until a chance encounter outside of his home sent him on a path to Berryville.

“I met the landlord of this building on the street where I live in Sterling . He was helping someone move out of their house and he saw my truck and asked me where I was located. I told him I’m home based right now. He said ‘Do you know where Berryville is?’ He told me the rent and the square footage and I thought, Wow.”

After a couple of months of thinking Dan made the move. “I had never been to Berryville. I had driven by many times, but I had never been in the town. I drove up here a couple of times to look at the space and decided to take it. I really like this little town.”

The space has presented him with an opportunity for a storefront that was never part of his plan. “I’m not counting on foot traffic, but with this great space as my commercial kitchen, it creates a great opportunity to share my products with new customers.”

His products are Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal Raisin, Peanut Butter, Coconut Macadamia, White Chocolate Cranberry and Sugar cookies. He also offers rich chocolate brownies topped with chocolate chips.Β  These hand made treats are offered in gift boxes and baskets in various sizes and can be delivered locally, but are also packaged to maintain their freshness for overnight shipping by major carriers.

Walk in customers will also be able to buy individual cookies and brownies as well as handmade chocolate bars and coffee.

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Katie Lettie says:

    I really like this; this is really cute. Welcome to Clarke County!

  2. StoneBroke says:

    Boutique Bakery——Wow! I guess all you can say is Good Luck!

    • The article specifically states that this is a mail order business. πŸ™‚ This is his commercial kitchen space and as an incidental extra, he will sell the occasional cookie to people stopping in but he’s not relying on making it as a gourmet bakery in Berryville!

  3. Hey Dan, you missed the train. Your were in line right behind the cupcake people!

  4. Birdonawire says:

    Yummmmmy! Welcome to Berryville, Clarke County VA.

  5. Another Bakery! WoW! Do people realize when they go Bankrupt in Berryville that you cannot beat a dead horse???? Don’t blame the Berryville Demo here…. When we will people open meaningful business’s here???

    • Way overpriced! says:

      What bakery went bankrupt? Just curious what I missed. Thanks πŸ™‚

    • Read the article! He makes his business mailing the baked goods. He picked Berryville because the rent was cheap for this to be his commercial kitchen space, not that he expects to make a living in Berryville selling expensive cookies.

      • Happy Berryville says:

        This is what I love about Berryville. It’s so friendly and welcoming!! πŸ™‚ Who cares what he decides to do with the space!!?? He’s paying for it, right? And it’s one LESS empty building in Berryvilleβ€”So what’s the issue?? If you don’t want a cookie, don’t buy one!

    • kenlynne white says:

      A GOOD bakery is needed! A real bakery!

  6. Michael Roberts says:

    Looks like its by the ABC store you can get cookies and bev all in one stop good luck

  7. Way overpriced! says:

    I really don’t think I will be paying $22 for a dozen brownies or cookies. That is just nuts! NOTHING can taste that good to justify those prices. Mrs. Fields for $3 a bag has my vote. Thank goodness he isn’t depending on the “foot traffic” as he stated. I think his Loudoun County pricing is not suitable for good old Clarke County. At any rate, welcome to Berryville.

    http://shop.thecookieguy.com/Brownies_c3.htm

    • knowswherethebodiesareburied says:

      For those old enough to recall, they must be adult brownies at that price !

  8. Welcome to Clarke, Mr. Cookie Guy! We will love your addition to our town. Seeing your shop is definitely better than an empty storefront. We also understand you didn’t really need to come here as your business has been doing quite well already. For this, we appreciate your willingness to give us a try. I for one will be certain to stop in your shop.

    • Beth, you won’t be sorry! Dan’s products are top-notch, and his generosity in portion size is, literally, big. He is also looking forward to supporting the Berryville community – and truly enjoys giving back. I see him every week in a business referral meeting, and he’s so excited about opening the bakery, he practically gushes about it! Enjoy! (and ask him about cheesecake lollipops!)

  9. loves new business ventures says:

    Welcome to Berryville and Clarke County, Cookie Guy!
    Sounds like this was a win three-fold. Cookie Guy finds affordable rent, landlord finds renter, and Berryville finds one less vacant storefront filled!

  10. Stonebroke says:

    Let’s see we now have cupcakes and cookies. I think I’m going to open up a Pudding Shop!

    • I think you missed the obvious. A milk stand would do much better. I would buy cookies over cupcakes anyway. Good luck to you Mr Cookie.

  11. flsunshinelady says:

    Fantastic news ! I would like to wish The Cookie Guy all the best in his new endeavor πŸ˜‰ Berryville is such a quaint country village and adding your business to their town will mean one less empty storefront ! May you have lots of steady customers and continue to help keep Berryville, Va a thriving, welcoming community.

  12. My college has a business just like this and it’s a really successful business. They only offer delivery so being able to walk into this place will certainly help even more. I think it has a lot of potential. Can’t wait to try some (:

  13. Welcome to Berryville Dan. It’s always refreshing to see people pursue a passion and take a risk starting something on their own. It’s what small town America is all about. Good Luck!

  14. Because I Care says:

    Is it BYOM? (Bring your own milk)

  15. Although I am happy to see an unoccupied store front be occupied, I would LOVE to have a REAL bakery in town. A place you can go and order a decorated cake for birthdays, holidays, weddings, etc….. Without having to go to The Sweet Tooth in Winc. PS Berryville News Stand cookies rock.

  16. StoneBroke says:

    Food Lion has decorated cakes and Subway has cookies! BOOYAH!

    • Food Lion has cakes-pre-packaged cakes that are not even made in the store. Subway has cookies-frozen mix that is shipped into the store and then baked. The Cookie Guy’s products(and quality) will far exceed anything that can be made in both stores-nothing wrong with their items and if that is what you choose to buy then so be it…..the rest of us will mosey on over to The Cookie Guy’s store…..more for us!

  17. Why doesn’t someone open a hand made bread store-cookies, etc are just incidentals-bread is a staple and the breadmakers at the farmers market always sell out.

  18. Bread is only a staple if you aren’t allergic to Gluten. πŸ˜‰

    I wish Dan tons of sucess and am happy to welcome his business to our town. Break a leg, Cookie Guy!

    NYC RULES!!!!!!

  19. My 2 Cents says:

    LOL @ Stonebroke! I bet the brownies at Food Lion aren’t 22.00 for 12! I give this guy 6 months! His own prices will drive him out of the Happy Metropolis that is Berryville!

    • Mr Mister says:

      You haven’t seen his pricing and you haven’t tasted his products, but you can sure judge anyway!! How big are the brownies? 12 for $22 is about $1.83.

  20. My 2 Cents says:

    I think I might go and open a Rug Store and a used Book Store on Main Street… Here’s hoping that I do well…… Originality people!!!!!!!!!

    • boomer says says:

      More book store competition plz! There are still several empty storefronts, and the competition will just bring more booklovers to town. Mew!

  21. I personally am very excited about this bakery coming to Berryville. When I went by the store to check it out and saw that cakes and wedding cakes were part of the business along with other special goodies I smiled because it meant one less trip to Winchester for special items. Not that I would buy a wedding cake once a week but I think that it is lovely to have the option right here in town. I wish this business great success and a happy welcome to Berryville.

  22. humpty dumpty says:

    Good gracious, how can this possibly be a negative thing. Get real it’s a new business whether it’s a private commercial kitchen or it offers something sweet for all of us. We can only benefit from it. Just having one more store front decorated makes me happy. Good Luck Dan, we welcome you with open arms.

  23. My 2 Cents says:

    And why do you people think there are constant open storefronts in B’ville? Its because people don’t open business’s that people will patronize day in and day out…. Down me all you want, but I am speaking the truth….. 6 Months….. You all will be eating crow…..

    • If you’d actually read the article, because clearly you have not, you’d see he isn’t relying on business from Berryville, but instead welcoming it as extra. Let me fill you in… He’s been doing it from his home for two years and clearly has earned enough to find commerical space. Any profit from walk ins will probably just be an added bonus.

      I think you need a yummy cookie. It might put you in a better mood.

  24. sargewillis says:

    COOKIES! Ya, I’ll be there for the brownies too!

  25. truthteller says:

    I come on this website like most to see whats going on. Its sad but true that no matter where you live there- are different types of people in every community. Its good to see that most of these comments are to welcolme a new face to town. Sad part is the “other type” is always so quick to throw out the bad wishes or sarcastic “good lucks”. Ladies and gentlemen help me wish Cookie Guy the best. I try to do that to everyone…maybe you should too. How ironic would it be if you were stuck on the side of the road and needed help, and the person who drove by would be the cookie guy?….. Do you think that if he knew who you were he would help? I can only guess you already know the answer. Come on Berryville lets be nice and welcoming to everyone. What do you get out of showing someone you dont know so little respect.
    A little nice goes a l o n g way! πŸ™‚

    • Because people aren’t happy unless a “Mc” is in the name of the new business. This guy is using a vacant storefront, tucked out of the way, and opens a mail order business. His prices on his website include shipping. After all, you can’t mail a letter without paying for it. I’m sure his “walk-in” prices are reasonable. Sure you can get a cheaper cookie at the dollar store, but you get what you pay for. I wish this guy good luck with his business. Not just because I like cookies.

  26. Sharon Strickland says:

    Hey, Cookie Guy!! Welcome to Berryville. I saw your vehicle recently and was wondering what you were doing in our area. Now, I know. I wish your commercial kitchen much success and it is nice to know that anyone meandering about your area can stop in for something sweet to eat. I routinely take my three grandchildren with me when I visit downtown and they will just go bonkers knowing that we can visit a Cookie Guy! I truly wish you success in our small town.

  27. I’m a regular customer of The Cookie Guy – AMAZING!!! He’s so good I’ll be making trips out to Berryville on occasion. It is currently BYOM (bring your own milk). I purchase his cookies for clients, but mainly it’s an excuse for my husband and I to indulge. And just so you know – it may be a bit more pricey than the dollar store, but there’s no sketch ingredients. Everything in there is REAL – butter, sugar, etc. and FRESH. He’s got a cookie that has 5 different chocolates…ok now I’m craving a cookie and need to go order some. As to the naysayers, I’m certain he’ll succeed (already has) without your support so no need to stress yourself out over his presence in your town.
    Berryville – enjoy The Cookie Guy! I know he’ll be bringing extra business to your town, because I’ll actually drive out there now.

  28. The Cookie Guy is now helping out on the tourism to Berryville! Good Job Cookie Guy!

  29. My 2 Cents says:

    Maybe we can interest you in a used book? Perhaps an Oriental Rug? Anyone one of our Dollar Stores and 7-11’s have wonderful deals.

  30. Sure are some smart Alec’s that live here in Berryville! Sheesh! With a name like “Cookie Guy” how can you go wrong. I will definitely be dropping by your store on occasion, now if you could just sell some special candy in your store you could be “The Candy Man” too!

  31. James Haven says:

    Good luck and Best wishes to your venture Dan.

  32. Brian McClemens says:

    Good Luck Cookie Guy.. Dont listen to the negative people.. They said my store would be closed in 6 months and I am going to be here 2 years now !!!

  33. My 2 Cents says:

    Because you actually have a good product Brian! Way to go!!!!!

  34. Brian McClemens says:

    Thanks .. My 2 Cents.. You must be a fan πŸ™‚

    • My 2 Cents says:

      We are big fans! Keep up the awesome work…… We love coming down and seeing you guys as much as we can.

  35. let us flash back to Dec 2008

    jim
    Wednesday December 8, 2010 – 1:35 pm
    Look at this post from the original House of Light story in the CDN. Looks like you were off John. It was more like 4 months.

    I give the breakfast joint 6 months. Lose the cross and maybe 8 months.

    John says:
    July 11, 2010 at 9:42 pm
    Out of business in 1 year

    Stilll going strong !!!! Thank You Jesus !!! Good Luck Cookie Guy

    • Brian,

      Jim was right about the House of Light store. Not the restaurant, the store. It was a flop. Please be honest. And Jesus had nothing to do with it. Do you think he’s making your place stay open while there’s torture, starvation, slavery etc. going on in the world? It’s you hard work and faith that do it. Give credit to yourself.

      And your dates are off. You say Dec. 2008 at the top. It was 2010.

      I wish you continued success. I say that sincerely.