Q&A with Eleni's NYC

Following the launch of Rachel Riley X Eleni's Cookies, this week, we catch up with Eleni for a delightful Q&A about the history of her award-winning cookies.

Eleni's Cookies have become a New York City staple, a stylish mom favorite and a celebrity must-have! 

Be sure to check out our new range of gorgeous new gift sets featuring a luxury tin of Eleni's 24 gourmet chocolate chip cookies - a wonderful gift idea for both mom and baby!

Tell us a brief history behind Eleni's Cookies & the key to its longevity & success!   

I wanted to start a company, and it seemed natural to follow my family’s long-standing fascination with sweet things. My grandmother loved to eat dessert first.

I’ve always enjoyed being creative with food presentation and what I love about the cookie business--and what I think is our key to our longevity and success--is the many ways a cookie can express an idea: it might be a crisp, yummy, dunkable basketball cookie or a delicate hand-decorated holiday snowman, or bookends for an excellent ice cream sandwich or even the perfect touch to a cake top.

We’ve been tasked with building a life-size gingerbread house out of cookies, a nine-layer chocolate chip wedding cake cookie, and I think we once tried to bake a replica of the George Washington Bridge.  Wait, no actually, I’m pretty sure I just dreamt that! But the endless recipes and client requests keep our work interesting, challenging and fun, day after day. The more complex the world gets, the more we are driven to imagine new dessert ideas, with high quality and taste at the core of everything we do.

Which are your bestselling styles and what do you think makes them so popular? 

Our bestselling cookie is by far Chocolate Chip.  Hands down, without a calculator, our #1 request.

We bake them light and crisp with high-end gourmet chocolate and they are not easy to resist.  They’re the people’s cookie!  Second to Chocolate Chip are our New York City decorated cookies. Who can say no to a delicious Statue of Liberty, yellow taxi, Staten Island Ferry, Broadway Playbill, or Metro Card sugar cookie? They’re a hit with native New Yorkers, former New Yorkers and aspiring New Yorkers alike. Wit cawfee or witout.
We are so excited to partner with you with our sweet new mom and baby gift sets!  We know you are a lifetime fan of dressing your little ones in RR when they were small!  Which were your favorite styles?

When I had my store in Carnegie Hill, my kids were very young, growing very fast, and needed new clothes like every ten days. It was serendipity to have the Rachel Riley store as our neighbor. I just adore the fabric patterns and colors. We went to Paris one summer and it was so much fun to dress the kids in matching Rachel Riley prints. One of my favorites on Sophia was a balloon print dress.  She looked so adorable in those little pastel balloons, I wished I could tie a string to her and parade her down the Champs-Élysées!


Eleni's children, Sophia and William, enjoying their holiday to France dressed in some early Rachel Riley designs

You have made some really fun cookie-based designs for celebrity and VIP customers alike, what's been the most extravagant / creative order to date?  

We had a very extravagant, very creative couple of weeks with a replica of Elton John’s summer home, requested by Harry & Laura Slatkin. We brought in a cookie architect; hand decorated each and every brick, candy window and landscaping detail, and then had to work with a fine art crater to get it to the UK. It was our first cookie-based real estate venture.

We love how creative you are with your designs!  Where do you draw inspiration from? 

I’m inspired by almost everything. Let’s be honest, NYC is Inspiration City: Central Park, MoMA, Union Square Farmers Market, Coney Island, Bergdorf Goodman!  Our line reflects what is going on in Gotham--fashion, news, entertainment--and  also in my personal life: my kids, dogs, friends and family, travel, nature.  And color.  The colors you can create with our advanced frosting palette is incredible. There’s green green, and then there’s pickle green, if you know what I mean?

We love your 'New Baby designs - a sweet treat for new parents is a must!' Any top tips for creating a super cute baby shower?  

Personalize everything. Personalize the colors, personalize the photos, personalize anything that will sit still with baby’s monogram. I use balloons at every occasion--they just make any event more light and bouncy. Cookies of course, champagne. Humor. And here’s a little pro-tip: rally the guests to absolve the new mom of sending thank you notes for the shower gifts.  She’ll be plenty busy!

As a mom yourself, what motivational mantra would you impart to new parents embarking into parenthood?

There are several good mantras.  Let’s start with SLEEP WHEN THE BABY SLEEPS, or at least BUY GOOD COFFEE.  I suppose TAKE LOTS OF PHOTOS is maybe redundant these days, but a good one nonetheless. Maybe ENJOY THE LITTLENESS?  Mine are 13, and 14 now, and I long for the days when I could dress them in tiny, adorable, matching Rachel Riley outfits.

William and Sophia in Rachel Riley designs from over the years

Eleni's Cookies are 
100% natural and made from the finest ingredients. They are nut free and only 50 calories per cookie!

Shop our new range of gift sets featuring this exciting new addition and choose an adorable gift for both mom and baby today!


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