Up in Harlem, Making Artisan Toffee Is a Family Affair | The Village Voice

By Jacqueline Raposo

Salt and Pepper toffees

Salt and Pepper toffees

Working with family doesn’t always spark the most aspirational images: think the insanity of the Osbournes, Kardashians, Trumps (gasp), and Lohans. But when it comes to making chocolate-covered toffee for Laurie Freeman Pauker, keeping business in the family is sweet.

Laurie & Sons started in 2013 when the New York Department of Economic Development opened kitchen incubator spaces in Harlem’s La Marqueta. Neither Pauker nor her three sons — Mike (24), Johnny (21), and Andrew (19) — had ever worked with candy professionally before, but she had noticed the community spirit surrounding small food businesses and was inspired to take the plunge with her treats. “There’s something about food that’s extremely communal, where people are willing to share and talk,” she says. “It’s not like other fields I’ve worked in, where people keep things close to the chest.”

Sharing their building with other small businesses Pipcorn and Hot Bread Kitchen, Laurie & Sons now makes over 300 bags of toffee a day during the busy season.

Read more: Up in Harlem, Making Artisan Toffee Is a Family Affair | The Village Voice

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