Sweet and Twisted

If you haven’t been into the new Twisted Sugar shop at 458 North Main Street in Heber, it definitely needs to be your next stop. Once you read this, go try it for yourself, but don’t be surprised if you’re tempted to stop in multiple times a week.

Twisted Sugar is a gourmet cookie shop with over 20 different flavors of cookies made from scratch, fresh, every day. They have over 100 fun drink flavors for their specialty sodas. If you don’t find what you want on the menu — no worries — you can create your own. They also sell refreshing flavored waters and Twisters, which are basically ice cream smoothies. Twisted Sugar got its start right here in Utah and has grown into a successful franchise with locations in Utah, Idaho, Nevada, South Carolina, Texas, and Washington, with lots more openings on the horizon.

Heber’s Twisted Sugar franchise owners, Marissa and Aaron Boyer, were living in a small, mountain town in Arizona when Marissa’s father decided to move to Utah in order to be close to family. He talked with Marissa about her moving and possibly opening a business together. The Boyers debated the move for a long time but ultimately decided that, they too, wanted to be closer to family in Utah. They knew they wanted to live in a mountain town; Aaron is an avid mountain biker and finds respite from his career as a nurse in the outdoors and nature. Marissa wanted a safe, close-knit community similar to where they were in Arizona.  Heber checked all the boxes and seemed like the perfect place to move their family.

Marissa had past experience running a small business in Arizona; baking and selling her own cookies to local boutiques. So, when her dad approached her about opening up a Twisted Sugar franchise location, she definitely felt like it was something that she was ready for. She loved the appeal of having her own cookie shop, and liked the idea of having a plan already laid out and ready to go. Her dad helped them get started and now Marissa runs the entire operation with Aaron’s help. The most difficult part was finding a location, especially once they decided to open in Heber. (If you know, you know, right?) Since the owners are responsible for finding and securing a location, and following the franchise aesthetic, Aaron’s handyman skills came in, well … handy. Aaron and Marissa did a lot of work themselves, remodeling and updating the building and getting everything ready for the grand opening which happened in March of this year. Marissa remarked that “The franchise itself was great about coming in and making sure everyone was properly trained and things would run smoothly by opening day.”

Most of the mixologist specialists employed are local high school students and, like everyone else, the couple continue to go thru labor difficulties. However, they feel very fortunate that high schoolers like working with cookies and soda. It creates a fun environment and they love that their location can be a place where the younger crowd can gather. But let’s be honest — cookies appeal to everyone! Marissa says, “People want to come in, they want to see the big case window, they love looking at the cookies.” All Twisted Sugar locations have a black and white decor theme, but the Boyer’s mosaic tile floor sets their store apart from other locations — which they are happy about.

The creator and founder of the franchise, Mike Jardine, created all the cookie recipes. In addition to the 20 cookie varieties, Mike decided to throw in two monthly cookie specials — just in case the original 20 flavors didn’t satisfy the sweet-fix you were looking for. Every month, there are two special cookies available ONLY for that month. The signature cookie is the Twisted Sugar (coconut frosting and fresh lime), but with choices like Peanut Butter Nutella and the chocolaty Crinkle Cookie, it’s easy to have more than one favorite. There is a yummy gluten-free cookie (finally!) that you can add any of the toppings to and even a low carb/keto option.

One thing that sets Marissa’s location apart and makes them unique is their two bakers. Marissa’s Twisted Sugar cookies are the closest thing to homemade cookies that you can get. The bakers make everything from scratch; as in actual measuring, creating, and baking all these cookies fresh every day. Nothing comes pre-measured or pre-made. No two cookies are the same; as for all the frostings and toppings — yup — all fresh too.

During the Market on Main, the Boyers were a familiar face with their cookie and drink booth. Being at the market really helped them get a feel for the local community. Marissa has enjoyed putting herself out there and getting to know her clientele well enough that now, when they come in, she already knows what their drink of choice is. They love the community and “being part of the action that happens in Heber.” As first time franchise owners, they are figuring things out as they go and just want everyone to know they are here. They have the drinks and the drive-up.

They actually have three soda machines! Their drive-up can safely accommodate up to 7-8 vehicles and is easy to access since it is right off Main Street. Marissa laughs, “we do a song and a dance to make our drinks especially amazing, we didn’t just stick a soda machine in the back, a lot of work and thought went into that thing! The soda machine has triple filtered water! We even ran it thru copper piping to make it extra cold so it doesn’t melt your ice, it’s a whole thing.”

Another thing that sets this location apart from other shops is that Marissa feels like a customer and she always wants her customers to leave happier than when they came in. “I train my employees to make the customer happy- that’s the whole point.” If they somehow mess up an order, they are willing to go the extra mile to make it right; she cares deeply about her customer’s satisfaction and happiness when they come into her shop.

Next time you find yourself craving a freshly baked sweet treat, or a refreshing drink, or both; place an order online, find an online parking spot at Twisted Sugar, and your delicious dessert will be brought out to you without you ever having to leave your vehicle. Of course, if you like leaving your mode of transportation, you can go inside and see for yourself all the tempting cookie and drink options and reasons why Marissa and Aaron’s Twisted Sugar will be your new favorite sugar stop.


 

Marissa’s Favorites:

  •  Berrylada Water
  •  Banana Cream Cookie
  •  Dr. Knievel Soda
  •  Pineapple Twister