Jovon English has a sweet tooth and one day she created a mash-up of a brownie and a cookie in a cupcake shape to satisfy it; she called it a brookie. As with many ridiculously good treats, friends and family wanted more, so English teamed up with Marques Brooks and Naimah Harris in 2014 to open Milk and Brookies, They operate out of a commercial commissary kitchen, so they don't have a store-front per se, but they do “pop-up shops” all over the greater Los Angeles area. They also sell online.
The brookies come in many flavors: OG (the original brookie) which is a chocolate chip cookie and fudge brownie, Peanut Butter, Snickerdoodle, Turtle, Red Velvet and more. Every once in a while, she'll do a “specialty brookie” like a maple caramel bacon flavor (which is supposedly to die for).
The business is fairly new and there's a bit of lack of sophistication in their web presence, but it appears there are many raving fans in LA. If they opened a retail shop, they'd probably be slammed.
My Take on the Brookies
These things sound delicious, but, with all due respect to Ms. English and company, the brookie isn't exactly a new invention. My Nana was making a similar treat since I was a kid. She'd take her chocolate chip cookie batter (my Nana made the BEST chocolate chip cookies in the world – NOTHING can compare in my book) and layer them over fudge brownie batter. I don't remember what, if anything, she called them, but it was what Milk and Brookies calls a brookie – sans cupcake shape. They were ridiculous!
That said, my Nana didn't market her wares in LA or on the internet, so nobody outside of our family or circle of (lucky) friends ever got to taste them. I have to believe, based on the reviews, that Milk and Brookies would give Nana a run for her money. Sprinkle in 21st century marketing and they likely have a good business. I'm in with one of those bacon brookies!
Sharks eat Brookies
The Sharks will destroy Milk and Brookies sample tray, but will they invest? My “Shark Sense” is telling me they won't.
Milk and Brookies Facebook page is still a personal page – not a business page. That screams “I don't have a Shark advising me.” Their website is functional and pretty good-looking, but it doesn't have that “Shark Tank look.” They have a fully functional eCommerce platform on their site and it works fine; I just hope they crank it up on show night because people are going to want some brookies when they're done pitching.
While the LA buzz is humming, it's still early for Milk and Brookies. They don't even really have a storefront, something I think is a must for a bakery-type item. Pop-up shops are cool, but if people can't find you in the same palce twice, they might not return. An online business is sustainable and can be grown quite nicely with their current set-up and without a Shark.
I think the Sharks are going to like the product, but I think Milk and Brookies is going to have to get back in the “batters” box.