maman

WHAT WE LOVE: Beautifully designed coffee shops. Delicious baked goods and their go-to award-winning nutty chocolate chip cookies. Maman’s menu focuses on locally sourced ingredients and twists on classic French favorites. The Soho location has an outdoor garden and Marche Maman, a retail market place.

WHERE: Maman has six New York locations and each one is charmingly unique.

WHO: Elisa Marshall and Ben Sormonte founded the first Maman in 2014, inspired by childhood memories in the kitchen, and their mother’s recipes.


THE SHOPKEEPERS

Who designed the Shop? Myself and my partner Ben look after all the design for the shops. We commissioned Candice Kaye to design the blue and white Toile-style wallpaper and pattern that decorates our cups.

What are you best known for? At Maman, we are most known for our nutty chocolate chip cookies (Oprah named them one of her favorite things in 2017) but on the marché side of things, I think we are most know for hard to find imported French items.

Who inspires you? My maman.

What inspires you? I take inspiration from everywhere, from a conversation with a stranger to a sign on the street corner. I am a very creative person and always have something brewing in my mind so I am always look for inspiration in my everyday life in the small things.

Before I was a shopkeeper, I…. was a buyer, merchandiser, interior designer, event planner, baker & caterer…and those are all still my titles today! Growing up, I never had that ‘what do you want to be when you grow up’ kind of thing. It was always a mixture of a hundred things, from a fashion designer, to a baker, to an event planner, an interior designer or the next Martha Stewart. I found myself juggling numerous ‘careers’ and passions with not enough hours in the day to do everything that I loved. I couldn’t find the perfect job, so I had to invent it, and put it all together under one roof (or 6 at this point)

What are you best known for? At Maman, we are most known for our nutty chocolate chip cookies (Oprah named them one of her favorite things in 2017) but on the marché side of things, I think we are most know for hard to find imported French items.

Who are your customers? I think Marche Maman attracts people who love beautiful things – from fashion to home, to food and even pretty coffee cups, attention to details and curating all things beautifully, naturally attract a like-minded clientele. Especially being in Soho, I feel there is a higher concentration of those who appreciate this. We want to create an environment where everything you see, touch, smell, and taste is memorable, beautiful, and of course delicious!

Photography by Camila Gutierrez and Jonica Moore

ON THE FUTURE OF RETAIL

“As much as the online shopping experience is taking over, I think that need for a physical and tangible experience can never be replaced. I personally am not an online shopper and love the experience of ‘shopping’. The hunt, the find & the satisfaction of finding a beautiful store & that perfect thing you were looking for (….or in many cases not at all).

To me there are so many products that you need to see, touch, smell, try etc. that the online shopping experience does not provide.

The dining out experience will never go away, and will always stay relevant, but I think more brands need to realize the positive impact there is in merging the two together. Dining out these days especially in NYC, is also oversaturated and we need to be creative in offering an experience as opposed to just good food.”

Maman

239 Center Street, Soho NY

211 West Broadway, Tribeca NY

22 West 25th Street, Nomad NY

80 Kent Street, Greenpoint Brooklyn

837 Washington Street, Meatpacking New York

100 King Street West, Toronto, Canada

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