Calling all cookie lovers! Last Crumb is an innovative delivery cookie brand here to bring some luxury into your favorite cheat day snack. Read on for an insight into co-founder Alana Arnold’s creative process and successful business.
The origins of Last Crumb started with a conversation at a holiday party. What about that chat was so inspirational, and how did it evolve into wanting to launch a business?
Mostly, yes. My co-founder Derek Jaeger and I have been friends for well over a decade, and we initially bonded over our passion for food and my love for his cookies. I thought they were the best I’ve ever had! I said back then that we needed to do something more meaningful for the world to see. Fast forward years of casual conversation, the dinner party was the final tipping point that convinced Derek we needed to give this a go with something that had never been done before in the food space. We watched the cookies spark conversation, bring people together, and that’s what it was all about. We wanted to bring luxury, exclusivity but most importantly, experience to a food item and do so with: cookies! This meant we would not only have the most delectable cookie but the most elevated experience associated with each cookie through packaging, product names and more.
How did you come to the conclusion that the drop model would be the right distribution method for Last Crumb?
I was drawn to the ‘drop’ mentality for sneakers and merch, and people’s dedication to getting something they can’t have fascinated me. It made me realize it’s not just about the product. It’s about the experience, the community and overall brand affinity. When I was thinking of Last Crumb, I realized I wanted to be a part of something more than just the product, something you can anticipate and share with friends. Each cookie is handcrafted over three days, allowing the flavors to come to life. Using a homemade butter mixture, handpicked vanilla and french chocolate cut into bite-sized pieces and cookie dough that rests for a total of 24 hours, we ensure that every bite is worth the price tag and worth the wait. Ahead of every new batch release, our customers can sign up for our purchase waitlist through email or SMS and, if they register in time, will be able to get their own box of Last Crumb.
Last Crumb was officially established in August 2020. What was it like navigating the launch of your business and the early days of the pandemic?
We were fortunate enough not to have had the business’ growth and progress jeopardized or affected by the pandemic. With the way people were staying at home and looking for ways to change up the quarantined life, our waitlist became longer and our demand skyrocketed. People were still craving experiences and looking for ways to indulge and treat themselves. Also, as a result of this and more, many other founders and investors saw the same potential in Last Crumb as we did, and because of that, we were able to gather funding in just a few days.
Why did you want to present Last Crumb buyers with more than just a tasty cookie, but a full-fledged dessert experience?
We wanted to create not just an edible, delicious item, but an exclusive club and lifestyle brand. We thought this elevated approach was unique to the food industry and a way to create a community, which is so important when building any brand. When the massive box arrives, you’ll notice glossy, premium, chic packaging and labeling. We kept the colors minimal (black, white and gray) and each cookie is individually wrapped with an innovative, stand-out name. Our shipping box is even branded so that from delivery to diving in, the consumer experiences total luxury. Also added to the experience is a chic magazine, which is our convenient (and a bit snarky/fun!) guide to having your very own cookie tasting. There are wine and cheese tastings out there, but with Last Crumb, you can now enjoy a cookie tasting.
Cookies aren’t exactly your typical luxury product, so why did it feel right to cater to this market?
Simply put, me and my co-founder Derek are cookie lovers. Thankfully, Derek is also passionate about the science of food and creating something spectacular. Cookies were a no-brainer given not only our love for the dessert but also how universally enjoyed they are. Also, there had not been a luxurious cookie brand or an elegant way to experience them. So, we sought to create a place for them in the market, taking a product not generally associated with luxury and delivering an unparalleled moment with every bite and every step of the experience. It’s the perfect gifting moment.
Can you give us any hint as to why Last Crumb cookies are so delicious— what’s the secret?
The secret is in our top-of-the-line ingredients and our extensive, meticulous processes. Much like sourcing top textiles for the perfect cashmere sweater, we sort through hundreds of different chocolates and dozens of flour mixtures before creating our delicious, luxe and highly anticipated cookies. Our handcrafted, three-day process carefully weaves in our premium ingredients and flavors, producing an unmatched confectionery experience.
You are approaching your official two-year anniversary. What are you most proud of so far with Last Crumb?
I am most proud of the epic team we have cultivated. We have some of the most talented, ambitious individuals that got us to where we are today. Together we’ve built something that makes people happy. It’s a great feeling.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Photography by: Photos by Audrey Ma for Last Crumb