Erin and Nic Vandre are on a mission.
The owners of Kind Cookie Company, recently launched in Pinehurst, the couple didn’t start selling cookies focused on profits. While it’s true money’s necessary to sustain business, the Vandres are more concerned about positive impact.
“We want to create something that has purpose behind it,” Nic, a Milwaukee native, said. “Giving back is so important for us.”
It could be said Nic, who’ll retire from the U.S. Army in two years, has already given his share. From what he and Erin advised, though, there’s never been an inclination to rest on laurels.
“This is something we’ve dreamed of doing,” Nic said. “It’s a way to create a community. It’s more than a cookie.”
Speaking of communities, the Vandres are great fans of Pinehurst and surrounding environs. Nic was brought to the area via the military in 2016, while Erin, originally from San Diego, arrived more recently.
“This is the cutest place I’ve ever seen in my life,” Erin said. “That’s what I thought when I first came here.”
Nic had an idea of what to expect prior to being stationed at Fort Bragg.
“I had heard so many great things about Moore County and Pinehurst,” he said. “It’s a bunch of really great Americans that live here. They understand what’s important. They get it.”
When it comes to giving, the tandem is still taking stock of possibilities. Their first objective is establishing the brand, both with consumers and as a going concern.
“The exact number of charitable organizations will be determined from our first year of sales,” Nic said. “We would also like to franchise this to our friends and family to take back to their own communities.”
Until Kind Cookie finds a brick-and-mortar location, baking is done out of a commercial kitchen in Carthage. The cookies reach customers at designated spots and, for the holidays, through home delivery. Plans for a food truck are also in the works.
Nationwide shipping gives those around the country a chance to enjoy the products.
As the company works to get established, assistance has come from local endeavors already on the map.
“We’ve gotten a lot of support with this business,” Erin said.
“A lot of restaurateurs have reached out to help,” Nic said. “Everyone has been so incredibly helpful.”
Presently, the company’s menu is devoted to cookies. But Erin’s baking expertise — she’s been at it for more than a decade — will lead to additional selections.
“We’re about to launch our winter collection of cookies,” Nic said. “We’re also going to introduce some of her other creations, such as her gourmet cupcakes and cinnamon rolls.”
A stint up north, in Milwaukee, helped Erin hone her skills in the kitchen.
“It was so cold, I basically stayed in the house and baked all the time,” she said.
It’s unlikely she’ll face similar conditions in Pinehurst.
“I also love that there’s no traffic,” Erin, used to notorious backups in Southern California, said. “And I love that the people are so nice.”
For more information on Kind Cookie Company, go to: .
~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Dave Lukow.