Today we’d like to introduce you to Monique Williams.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Monique. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
My journey to The Cheesecake Empori-Yum! started with the simple need to earn extra money. It was 2010, and I was recently engaged and planning the wedding of my dreams. With everything I wanted and the total price climbing, I decided to start baking to earn extra money. I would bake an average of 200 cupcakes a day to sell to my coworkers every weekend, and I would sell out within an hour! Needless to say, it kept me busy and provided the extra income I needed for my wedding. What a wedding it was, the best time of my life, although it was short lived. By 2014, I was going through a divorce, living on my own, and short on savings so I went back to baking as an extra income. Not only was I able to support myself but baking became my therapy and outlet. Everyone loved my desserts and urged me to strike out on my own and open a bakery.
After much thought, I decided that If I was going to own a bakery it would have to revolve my favorite dessert- Cheesecake! I spent all my spare time creating recipes, coming up with a name, and getting my business up and running and in the beginning of 2016, I was in downtown Montgomery, AL with a weekly pop-up shop showcasing my one of a kind cheesecake creation. They were a big hit and on March 17th 2017, I opened up our store front in the historic Mulberry business district and I haven’t looked back since! God has a great sense of humor. I remember prying every day for a baby when I was married and my prayers went unanswered but God had a bigger purpose for me. He gifted me with a business to grow and care for instead. I have been so blessed to create The Cheesecake Empori-Yum!
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
One of the biggest struggles has also been financing. I started this business with literally $100 worth of ingredients and some days have been easier than others. As an African- American business, I was seen as high risk by all of the banks I sought out for a loan to grow my business. Ultimately, I’ve had to grow my business, little by little, and now thankfully we are to the point where the business is in the green and we have saved enough to move from our small one room to-go operation to a sit down bakery bar that I have always dreamed of. It’s has been a long road to get to this point but the journey has taught me to look at different and innovative ways to afford and acquire the things my business needed to thrive.
The Cheesecake Empori-Yum – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
At The Cheesecake Empori-Yum, we specialize in any and everything cheesecake. We currently make over 60 different flavors of cheesecake, including sugar free and vegan. On top of that we also make fried cheesecake, cheesecake stuffed cinnamon rolls, and even cheesecake nachos. And if that wasn’t enough, we specialize in gourmet Eggrolls as well. Our number seller is our Soulfood Eggrolls which contain chicken, cornbread, and collard greens in an Eggroll with our homemade cranberry maple dipping sauce. Recently, we have were named Best Cheesecake in the State of Alabama by MSN.com. Our unique flavors and superb customer service set us apart from other cheesecake bakeries. From Peach Cobbler Cheesecake to Sour Patch, we have a flavor to match everyone’s taste buds and mood!
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I would have researched more about taxes and fees associated with running a business. I had NO CLUE starting out and ultimately got hit with extra fees for just not knowing the ins and outs.
- Address: 1935 Mulberry Street
Montgomery, AL 36106
- Website: Www.cheesecakeemporiyum.com
- Phone: (334) 603-6963
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @cheesecakeempori_yum
- Facebook: @TheCheesecakeEmpori-Yum
- Twitter: @TCEmpori-yum
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