HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, NJ -- The final touches are being made to Philly Pretzel Factory scheduled to open early next week. The new retail shop is taking over the former Subway store on Route 17 South in Hasbrouck Heights.
"We're almost there," said franchisee JoAnn Ciano. "We have two more inspections left."
The journey began in earnest last year, Ciano explained. She said her husband, Mark Sr., had been talking about starting a business. Most of her research found more negatives than positives in the business opportunities. Then Luke, her youngest son, had a suggestion.
"'Mom, what about Philly Pretzel Factory?'" she recalled.
Luke had been to several of the shops, popular in south Jersey and Philadelphia area. After some more research and a review of the financials by Mark Sr., the family met the corporate team in October 2017 and signed the following month.
While the store was being retrofitted, the Mark Sr. and JoAnn attended and graduated Pretzel University. The whole family, including children Laura, Amanda, Mark Jr. and Luke, will help at the store in various capacities.
Some of the recent equipment installed include an industrial mixer, which holds 50 pounds of flour and can, depending on the item, yield 360 pretzels in a batch, the dough stringer, work tables, a frozen lemonade machine, ovens, salt table and menu display boards.
The store will offer a range of pretzels, savory and sweet, dips, and party platters. She is anticipating that the cheesesteak pretzel and cinnamon pretzel twists will be popular.
The shop will hold its soft opening early next week, with an official grand opening planned for early September.
Philly Pretzel Factory is located at 155 Route 17 South, in Hasbrouck Heights.
(Editor's Note: another franchise, under different management, was open in Carlstadt, but was closed eight years ago. The article was revised to removed the 'first in Bergen County" references.)
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