A trio of savvy entrepreneurs has created a new popsicle craze on the coast: with fresh flavors and creative recipes, there's little wonder
- story by Lisa Monti
A year ago they finally found the Bay St. Louis storefront they’d been looking for when a space became available at 111 Main Street. The new store replaced a spot inside nearby Cuz’s seafood restaurant. The newest location - the fourth - is is now open alongside a gourmet candy maker in Grayton Beach, Fla.
Pop Brothers products also are sold at other outlets including Lazy Magnolia, Margaritaville, Hard Rock and Scarlet Pearl casinos and Gulf Islands Water Park and at catered events and festivals from carts like the one that got it all started.
Shannon said the team is thrilled with the Bay St. Louis store. “It took us over a year to find a spot but we’re so happy to be here,” she said.
And customers, including a good number of tourists, are happy that Pops Brothers is here too.
“We have visitors from everywhere you can imagine. It’s really amazing how many people end up in our store from all over the place,” Shannon said.
The shop has communal bench seating and big windows so customers can watch the flow of traffic on Main Street while they enjoy their selection.
On Second Saturday in June, when the monthly art walk and Frida Fest converged, the Main Street store sold a whooping 400 popsicles, the most daily sales yet for the location.
Pop Brothers makes 50 varieties, all created by Octavia, an experienced chef with big-name credentials from his restaurant days in Chicago. He comes up with the flavors, using his creative culinary skills to combine fresh fruits and herbs and spices.
About half the menu flavors are available all year; the rest depends on what fruit is available and that’s dictated by seasons and weather. “We’re at the mercy of Mother Nature,” Shannon said.
All the ingredients come from within a 2.5-hour radius except for the exotic fruits which come in to New Orleans from South America, Cuba and other points. “My husband is an expert in sourcing and buying and creating flavors,” Shannon said. He’s known in-house as the Pop Master.
So what are customers craving this steamy summer? “The top three are Oreo cheesecake, berries and cream, the mango and strawberry lemonade and the Barq’s Root Beer float. It’s fantastic. It even tastes bubbly,” Shannon said.
To keep up with demand, Pop Brothers makes 2,000 to 3,000 a day by hand. “That’s the key to why they taste so good,” Shannon said. “Once it’s automated you loose something."
The pops come in three categories: fruit, cream and indulgent. For the really indulgent, you can get yours dipped in dark chocolate, white chocolate or both.
Pop Brothers also has created two Pooch Pops that are extremely popular with spoiled dogs and their owners. “We sell tons of them,” Shannon said. One is made with chicken broth, fresh green beans and other good stuff for breath and coat. The other is made with peanut butter, cheese and bacon. My dog lapped his up.
111 Main Street
Bay St. Louis
Monday-Thursday 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Friday-Saturday 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
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