'First taste of P.E.I.': Handpie Company amps up for expansion
Company excited to take over new space
The Handpie Company is on the move and amping up for an expansion, uprooting from their spot in Borden-Carleton, P.E.I.'s Gateway Village to a space just a little bit closer to the Confederation Bridge.
The building they were in was sold, says Sarah Bennetto O'Brien, chef and owner of The Handpie Company, and they're moving into a new home a bit bigger than their current pie-making joint.
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There's a ton of potential here and I just want to continue to be a part of it — I truly love Borden-Carleton.—Sarah Bennetto O'Brien
"It'll be quite a bit better," she said about the new space.
"A lot of the tourists coming onto the Island kind of stop at that end of the gateway and a lot of them never made their way up to our end, or they'd eaten before they got to our end of the gateway."
At the same time they're also trying to expand their business and putting a plan together to build their "dream facility."
Beer and pie a 'match made in heaven'
The new spot is located in the emporium building on Abegweit Boulevard, across from Information Centre in the Gateway Village.
"We're closer to the liquor store, which is one of the only other things that stays open all year round, so it's kind of your one-stop shopping in Borden-Carleton," she laughed.
To go along with their new space they're working on expanding their business to sell across Island, trying and catch up with the high demand for their handheld pies.
At the moment, they have a waiting list of about 10 businesses wanting to sell their pastries fresh or frozen, Bennetto O'Brien said.
Although she wouldn't say which companies are interested in selling the pies, she did hint that "handpies go really really well with local beer."
"For breweries to be able to offer a local-ingredient, epic handpie along with their amazing beer is a match made in heaven."
'Borden-Carleton is the next big thing'
In an ideal world, she said, they'd love to have a 3,000 square foot facility with a sizeable walk-in freezer to make enough product for the 10 potential locations as well as fulfilling their own peak-season needs.
"We're kind of people's first taste of P.E.I. and I would just love to be able to be producing already," she added.
The business has been doing incredibly well since it started four years ago, Bennetto O'Brien said, and they're just starting to "rev our engines" in terms of growth on P.E.I.
She estimates it would cost around $300,000 for their dream facility, including the land cost, and they may start building in the next year or two.
Although they have no plans of leaving the small community that's helped build her business into what it is today.
"Borden-Carleton is the next big thing and I truly believe in that," she said.
"There's a ton of potential here and I just want to continue to be a part of it. I truly love Borden-Carleton."
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With files from Laura Chapin