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Denise's Ice Cream has closed

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Dining Denise’s Ice Cream has closed

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 26 total)
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  • #85227

    taxguy
    Member

    Has anyone heard anything about Denise’s Ice Cream in Clintonville?

    Every time I’ve walked past it in the last few weeks, signs indicating they were closed for the holidays have been posted, and I just heard that the place is for lease.

    If they close it’ll break my heart (and lower my cholesterol)!

    #425753

    Cookie
    Member

    I noticed a sign in the window the other day saying the space was for lease.

    #425754

    zp945
    Participant

    Yep. Closed. That’s too bad, I liked walking up there in the summer. I never have understood the business model of a 2300 sf ice cream shop in Ohio. I wish the owners luck in whatever they do next.

    #425755

    pspock
    Participant

    zp945 wrote >>
    I never have understood the business model of a 2300 sf ice cream shop in Ohio.

    The 2300 sf shop was not the problem. He opened the shop in 2004, and was not only able to afford the rent of 2300 sf without a problem, he was so successful that there was a good argument going of who was better (Denise’s or Jeni’s?).

    But then the business area that Denise’s was in had it’s parking cut in half with a new building built by his own landlord three years ago. Since then even his dedicated customers had a heck of time finding a place to park near him, so he ended up losing a lot of customers because they would chose to drive to a Jeni’s or Graeters instead due to parking.

    Then he had a stroke a year or two ago, and it became just a matter of time before it ended.

    The guy was a fantastic ice cream maker, on par, or even better than Jeni. But sometimes business success or failure has more to do with things outside of the control of the business owner than it does the talents of the business owner.

    I hope people remember how good he was at what he did, and not that his business ended up closing due to changes in the location and his health.

    #425756
    Chris Sherman
    Chris Sherman
    Participant

    i thought the ice cream was good but no jeni’s. sorry to hear about his health and business closer.

    #425757

    Cats With Thumbs
    Participant

    this is too bad. their ice cream was really good.

    #425758

    Lakee911
    Participant

    That is so sad. I loved that place. Parking did suck…

    Maybe he could have his ice cream carried by local restaurants or something?

    #425759

    pspock
    Participant

    Lakee911 wrote >>
    That is so sad. I loved that place. Parking did suck…
    Maybe he could have his ice cream carried by local restaurants or something?

    I got the chance to spend a couple hours with him last spring. He took me behind the counter and into the back to show and talk to me about everything he did to make his ice cream. Apparently over the years he would do that with anyone interested in seeing and hearing about it, and he loved sharing about what he did to make ice cream as much as he enjoyed making it. I really wish I had gotten to do it before he had the stroke, because the stroke had impaired his speach, but his genius as an ice cream maker was obvious as I watched him work.

    I learned that he did sell his ice cream to some local restaurants, but he shared that even that was a tough market to gain given he “was not a cute as Jeni” (his exact words). He even shared that some restaurant owners like his product better than Graeters, but would carry Graeters for no other reason than their customer’s recognized the Graeters name.

    Such is competition how business works, so I don’t want to make it appear that he wasn’t whinning about it, but he did share that he was far more appreciated in Boston with his two stores there, than he ever was in Columbus. He moved to Columbus in 2004 because his wife’s job got moved here. He was to Boston what Jeni is to Columbus before he moved, and he seemed sad that he was never appreciated here like he was in Boston.

    Fantastic guy to just talk with, even with the post-stroke speach impediment. I wish him well!!!

    #425760

    zp945
    Participant

    pspock wrote >>

    zp945 wrote >>
    I never have understood the business model of a 2300 sf ice cream shop in Ohio.

    The 2300 sf shop was not the problem. He opened the shop in 2004, and was not only able to afford the rent of 2300 sf without a problem, he was so successful that there was a good argument going of who was better (Denise’s or Jeni’s?).
    But then the business area that Denise’s was in had it’s parking cut in half with a new building built by his own landlord three years ago. Since then even his dedicated customers had a heck of time finding a place to park near him, so he ended up losing a lot of customers because they would chose to drive to a Jeni’s or Graeters instead due to parking.
    Then he had a stroke a year or two ago, and it became just a matter of time before it ended.
    The guy was a fantastic ice cream maker, on par, or even better than Jeni. But sometimes business success or failure has more to do with things outside of the control of the business owner than it does the talents of the business owner.
    I hope people remember how good he was at what he did, and not that his business ended up closing due to changes in the location and his health.

    I’ve never met the owner, and I certainly didn’t mean to imply that he was a bad business owner. I have seen several very large ice cream shops (my current restaurant is in a 2300 SF former Emack and Bolio’s) and it always seemed like a concept that was meant for a smaller footprint. They were clearly doing something right, a seven year run is very respectable, especially through the last few years. As I said, I wish them well in whatever they do next.

    #425761

    Parker
    Participant

    Sad to hear this. Denise’s White Coffee was the best coffee ice cream ever made. In conversation with the owner, I decided that it tasted like good coffee smells. I wish him luck, and hope he shares his recipes with someone. I wouldn’t say better than Jeni’s, on par but different, and without the pretense.

    #425762

    Jann
    Member

    I stopped by this place once. Perhaps his East Coast version of service had something to do with the closure too. It doesn’t play well to a Midwestern population. The service was terrible although it certainly wasn’t busy with only one couple in front of me. He was not helpful when I inquired about the flavor that brought me there.

    Every time I’ve visited Jeni’s, the service has been good and the staff has always been helpful and friendly. Perhaps she’s “cuter” than he is, but my limited experience suggests their personalities very well may have shown through their staff. Jeni’s is a much more pleasant all-around experience with great ice creams.

    #425763

    bldng4jstc
    Participant

    I frequented this place a lot during the summer and always had great service. I even forgot once to tell the girl that I wanted the yogurt over the ice cream and she gave me the ice cream for free. Really sad to see this place go.

    As far as parking, yes parking was hard if parallel parking gives you nightmares or walking the 250ft from the parking lot behind the building is something you would label as ‘exercise’.

    #425764

    CycleJackson
    Member

    pspock wrote >>

    I learned that he did sell his ice cream to some local restaurants, but he shared that even that was a tough market to gain given he “was not a cute as Jeni” (his exact words).

    Get real, this guy was obsessed with Jeni and used every opportunity he could to bash her and her business. He did so in his store to customers he doesn’t know and he did so in an Other Paper story a few years back. Successful businesses in Columbus don’t spend time bashing their local competitors. Had he spent less time bashing Jeni and more time focusing on giving good, reliably good service in an comfortable environment (like Jeni’s) business would probably be a lot different. It’s not like Jeni has any more parking at her locations in the Short North and Grandview. This guy was 100% sour grapes and this attitude doesn’t go over so well in the midwest. Good riddance.

    #425765

    Lakee911
    Participant

    I’m very sad to see it gone like many of you are. I never experienced any of the bashing first hand. I always had good service too. I happened to prefer it over Jeni’s too.

    #425766

    Urban Dansigner
    Participant

    I went in there a few times,pre stroke, and found the owner to be bitter. He railed about the parking situation; that argument fails to move me. Both Greater’s in Bexley and Jeni’s in SN, Bexley and Grandview have the same or worse parking, but they make a go of it. His Ice Cream was excellent but he was not a good promoter of his product, he himself was not particularly pleasant and the service was bad.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 26 total)

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