The notion of selling the unique cookie creations — which are now featured at Anthony’s Cookies on the fringe of San Francisco’s Mission District — first came to founder Anthony Lucas in the form of a “suggestion not to be taken seriously.”
Fast forward 20 years into his cookie-creating career, Lucas is expanding his San Francisco-based business to a Berkeley storefront. The soft opening of Anthony’s Cookies’ second location at 2575 San Pablo Avenue will happen this week “no later than Saturday,” according to Lucas.
The Berkeley location will be the first of the stores to serve ice cream, a carefully selected cookie-complement, Lucas said. The location will also feature a selection of espresso drinks to be enjoyed alongside the freshly baked goods.
Anthony’s Cookies is known for their specialty cookie flavors such as cinnamon spice and toffee chip. One of the most popular flavors, cookies and cream, Lucas said, originated first at Anthony’s Cookies before becoming a popular cookie flavor for other outlets to sell.
In addition, the aesthetic of the Berkeley location’s storefront differs significantly from that of the San Francisco location. The Mission District location is characteristic of the typical San Franciscan architecture, with a bright-red paint job and long, slender columns. In contrast, the Berkeley storefront features a stark steel-gray and white exterior.
The space at 2575 San Pablo Ave. opens to a busy street with a collection of local businesses scattered throughout the neighboring blocks. Anthony’s Cookies joins other local favorites such as Longbranch Saloon.
Lucas said he is excited to make the move to Berkeley because of the community that awaits. The community itself has also shown signs of anticipating the opening of the store.
“I’m sure it would be a great addition to the Berkeley food scene,” said Emeryville resident and campus alumna Mary Falcon in an email. Falcon noted that though the prices at the San Francisco location are on the higher end, the “cookies (are) made with high quality ingredients.”
Jarrett Adams, manager of nearby restaurant Paisan Berkeley said Anthony’s Cookies would fit in nicely with local eateries.
“I think it will be a great addition to the neighborhood,” Adams said.
Paisan Berkeley, though not focused on the same type of desserts as Anthony’s, also serves ice cream to their patrons. Adams, however, said he was not worried about competition from Anthony’s.
“If anything, I think it will bring more business to the community,” Adams said.
The new Berkeley dessert stop offers a wealth of opportunity for Anthony’s Cookies, Lucas said. The location will not only attract customers, but will also function as the epicenter of growth for the business.
Lucas also shared his ambitions to experiment with his creations.
“The beautiful thing about this facility is that it will allow us to be creative,” Lucas said.