October 25th, 2011 | University

Call Me Cookie not disconnected yet

Student-run startup Call Me Cookie faces a threat from the chain store Insomnia Cookies, which will soon open its doors on Chapel Street. Above, a selection from a Call Me Cookie poster.
Student-run startup Call Me Cookie faces a threat from the chain store Insomnia Cookies, which will soon open its doors on Chapel Street. Above, a selection from a Call Me Cookie poster. Photo by Facebook.

When Aaron Seriff-Cullick ’13 signed onto Facebook Oct. 11, his stomach dropped.

His roommate had just posted to inform him that Insomnia Cookies, a chain store that delivers cookies and other desserts late into the evening, is slated to open on Chapel Street. Seriff-Cullick, who spent his first two years at Yale building his own cookie delivery empire “Call Me Cookie,” which offers nearly identical services, is studying abroad this semester in Spain, unable to protect his turf. He says that though the competition is formidable, he is trying not to worry.

“I’m hoping that students will realize that my mission is different from Insomnia Cookies’ mission,” Seriff-Cullick said. “When I bake cookies, I really do put a lot of love into them, in a way that is impossible with pre-packaged cookie dough.”

Seriff-Cullick first started the business in a friend’s off-campus apartment as a way to help pay for college, baking each day from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and spending the remainder of the evening hand-delivering his baked goods. As his business progressed, Seriff-Cullick began catering campus events. Chris Medeiros ’13, a member of the Yale Alley Cats, says that Seriff-Cullick’s campus-specific confections add to the intimate nature of his venture.

“It almost seems a shame he went abroad this semester right when it was starting to get really well known,” Medeiros said. And it was definitely nice to be able to deal with a person for your baked goods.”

Still, Seriff-Cullick faces formidable competition in Insomnia Cookies. As a store with a multi-person staff, the store will offer a greater variety than his one-man operation. When pressed for specifics on his course of action upon returning from Spain, Seriff-Cullick simply offered, “one thing: Cookie party.”