Sweet Lorraine's Girds for Sweet-Toothed Shoppers
Candy store is in the middle of the Valentine's Day rush, its third-busiest holiday of the year.
Bob Sullivan is in the middle of the third-largest holiday season of the year for Sweet Lorraine’s candy store on Waseca Avenue.
“Christmas is first, Easter is second and then it’s Valentine’s Day,” said Sullivan.
To cater to all those last-minute sweetheart shoppers – mostly men -- who are expected to be out in droves this weekend, he said, the candy store will be open all day Sunday.
“The women started shopping last week,” Sullivan said. “Not the men. But they’ll be able to get the finest chocolate in the state" right up to Valentine's Day.
Sullivan doesn’t boast idly about the products he and his wife, Mari, stock, which includes local artisan chocolates and penny, sugar-free, nut-free and organic candy.
He believes that local candy makers produce some of the best sweets in the world. That’s why he stocks mostly local products.
For instance, Sweet Lorraine’s features Sweenor's candy, made in Wakefield; Hauser truffles, made in Westerly, and Garrison Confections, made in Central Falls.
“You spend $10 in this store and it stays in this state,” said Sullivan, who even buys his paper bags from a company in Providence.
Sullivan and his wife opened the candy shop about 2½ years ago. Going into retail was a major change for him as a production operations manager for the Wall Street Journal, including six years at the company's printing plant in The Netherlands. He and his wife spent six years and had their two children there.
“We were walking by and saw a for-rent sign,” he said of the Waseca Avenue shop. “The idea came back to us.”
The idea they resurrected, he said, was to replace a former candy store, Nuts & Such, which closed in Barrington a few years ago.
“We opened in the middle of a recession,” he said as a smile crossed his face.
Recession should be the last thing Sullivan thinks about this weekend. He should be smiling. Valentine's Day is his third busiest time of the year, after all.