Tiphanie Cannon recently gave this advice to people considering getting into the restaurant business: “You can’t stay the same” because the business environment is always changing. Be prepared to adapt to changing times.
Ms. Cannon is following her own change-with-the-times advice. She is moving her bakery business – Oh So Sweet By Tiphanie – from 314 Main St., Davenport, to a new, bigger site in the downtown district to better serve her customers in these changing times.
If all goes according to plan, Oh So Sweet will be open for business at 210 E. Second St. in February. The bakery will be on the first floor of the new Urbane 210 apartment and business building. The building, which opened last year, features 56 apartments and commercial space on the ground floor.
Ms. Cannon called the Urbane 210 a “kind of sexy building.”
But the building’s main attraction is the space. Oh So Sweet will be moving into 3,900 square feet, which is much larger than its current home on Main Street, which spans about 1,200 square feet. The new location will have more space for customer seating with about 82 seats, and a kitchen that is more than triple the space of the current bakery kitchen.
“It means more cakes, more cookies and a lot more room for customers,” said Ms. Cannon.
Interior work on the new site began Tuesday, Aug. 9.
Ms. Cannon and Emma Trimble, manager of Oh So Sweet, gave the QCBJ a quick tour last week of the first floor location. That site is still mostly empty, but there is a larger wooden sign outside the building stating the business is “Coming Soon” to the downtown neighborhood.
When Oh So Sweet opens in its new home, it will be in a thriving downtown area ramping up with new restaurants and bars. In addition to the new apartments in the same building, it will be across the street from the Barrel House and Major Art & Hobby.
This is all great news for Ms. Cannon, who is a big fan and supporter of Davenport’s downtown district.
“I love downtown. If you cut me, I bleed downtown,” she added. “And if you say something against downtown, we’re going to have a fight.”
The upcoming move for the bakery is also getting rave reviews from the business community.
“From her roots at the Freight House Farmers Market to great success as a brick-and-mortar bakery on Main Street, Tiphanie Cannon made Oh So Sweet a staple of downtown Davenport over the years,” said Kyle Carter, executive director of the Downtown Davenport Partnership.
“Her new location on East Second Street – making Oh So Sweet the anchor tenant of Urbane 210 – is yet another exciting chapter of her businesses’ growth.”
Oh So Sweet’s pending downtown move is just the latest chapter for the business that has been located on Main Street for the past eight and a half years. That history has included making changes to the business to survive and thrive during the pandemic.
Ms. Cannon adds that Oh So Sweet did great business during the pandemic. In fact, one of her biggest problems was finding enough employees to keep up with growing demand for bakery and lunch menu goods.
Today, some of her best-selling items include custom cakes and cupcakes for weddings and other large events, and gluten-free goodies. Those cupcakes include: double chocolate, red velvet and strawberry. The sandwiches on the lunch menu also are big sellers. Some of those lunch sandwiches include: the Cluck Norris, which includes sliced chicken breast, avocado, homemade ranch dressing, farmers cheese and greens; the Apple Ham Jam, which includes ham, swiss, homemade apple butter, red onion and greens; and Donna’s Delight, which includes roast beef, caramelized onions, provolone and BBQ aioli. (For a menu, visit ohsosweetbytiphanie.com.)
Ms. Cannon also gave some other tips for people considering getting into the restaurant business including: Keep your menu small, and be willing to change with the changing times. “You can’t stay the same,” she added. One more: be willing to put your face on your business in order to make the business “more human.”
“People put their dukes down when they know you are human,” she added.