With the summer heat upon us, what better time is there to talk about ice cream? This month, we’re excited to interview local entrepreneur Steven Dorcelien, owner of Bright Yellow Creamery, who serve up delicious small-batch ice cream from locally sourced ingredients and is proudly based here in Philadelphia!
Bragging rights: Tell us a little about yourself and Bright Yellow Creamery.
I moved to Philadelphia a little over a year ago bringing with me a love for creating delicious ice cream and a desire to open my own business. After completing an intensive ice cream educational program at Penn State, I started Bright Yellow Creamery with a mission to make ice cream from scratch, using real ingredients from local suppliers. We currently operate out of a mobile cart and serve the Jefferson, Rittenhouse Square, and Dickinson Square Park farmers’ markets along with festivals throughout Philadelphia. Our flavors bring wholesome, natural ingredients like ginger, lemongrass, cinnamon, cocoa, honey, peaches, and of course, vanilla, to life. We’re proud to have built a menu around flavors that people understand and love, sourced from places they know, and without the use of genetically modified ingredients, high fructose corn syrup, artificial coloring or flavors, or anything that isn’t necessary.
What tools and resources were most helpful to you during your startup process? What tools and resources are most helpful for you now?
During the startup process, one of the most beneficial tools I used (almost daily) was ReferenceUSA. Prior to an information session that BRIC (Business Resource & Innovation Center) hosted on the database, I didn’t have a clue that it even existed… but it certainly proved to be vital to our launch. The database allowed us to pull information on local consumer behaviors and the areas around town in which we faced the most competition. It was so detailed that we were even able to pull information on the areas in town that had the biggest shifts in new homeowners, down to their age and if they had children. One of my most used tools today is QuickBooks and I would recommend it to any new business owner.
How did BRIC’s resources help you along your way?
In addition to the electronic resources that BRIC provides, their events and networking opportunities proved to be equally as important. I recall attending events on business financing, doing business with nonprofits, and creating a business plan. All of which I believe were free! I not only learned a ton from experts on these topics but the networking after these events was equally as beneficial.
What’s the one thing you wish you knew when you were getting started?
How much people love helping small businesses and learning about the owners/teams behind the company. I wasn’t expecting the great reception we’ve received from the community and I’ve really appreciated how much people care about why we started Bright Yellow Creamery and what our products are all about.
Any advice for new or aspiring business owners in Philly?
Start today! You will never be 100% ready for your launch no matter how hard you try. Be willing to adjust based on your customers’ feedback and have fun! Starting a business will be one of the most challenging things you’ll ever do. There will be low days. Many of them. But the highs make it all worth it. There’s no better feeling than making a product with care that people love.
What is something awesome that people may not know about your company?
We are actively looking to open our first brick-and-mortar shop in Philadelphia… suggestions and tips are welcome!
...and finally, what are you currently reading?
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
Learn more about Bright Yellow Creamery at www.brightyellowcreamery.com and catch their bright yellow cart around town! Taste-tested and highly recommended by BRIC librarians.