5 questions with Theresa LeFlore
BY JOHN STANCAVAGE World Business Editor
Friday, May 18, 2012
5/18/12 at 5:00 AM
Theresa LeFlore is general manager of Lolli and Pops, a candy store at Woodland Hills Mall.
1: What makes Lolli and Pops different from most candy stores? How did Tulsa become the site for the first one?
Lolli and Pops is the most magical candy store in the country. We're an old English apothecary with a modern twist. We pride ourselves on being "purveyors of sweetness," scour the planet for the very best confections and carry more than 600 unique chocolates, sours, gummies and nostalgic candies.
Tulsa became the site for the first store because our roots are in Oklahoma. Our parent company has had candy stores in Oklahoma for over 15 years. Add to that, Tulsans are modern with a sophisticated yet authentic palette and an undying love for candy - you have a winning combination.
2: We've all heard the phrase "happy as a kid in a candy store." What is it like to essentially be that kid and work with candy all day?
This is truly the best job in the world. My job, every day, is to make others happy. Just the other day I had the pleasure of delighting a 9-year-old girl with her favorite strawberry-banana sour belts - imported from Spain - and delighting her grandma with Zotz, which she hadn't had since she was a child.
No matter what the age, we love helping our guests rediscover their inner-child and savor their favorite candies.
3: How are candy sales doing in this economy?
Candy continues to do well. While people's budgets are tight, candy is a small indulgence that can make even the worst day just a little bit brighter. And offerings, like our colorful candy buffets, are affordable solutions to celebrating a special day such as a graduation or wedding.
4: What are some of the trends in candy?
Over the past couple years, we've certainly seen a movement towards gourmet chocolate. People are looking for chocolate bars with higher cacao content and single-origin sources. We carry over 50 different types of chocolate bars, including Ritter, Milka, Canbury, Lindt and Scharffen Berger.
5 Let's say you're leaving the store after a long day and have so far resisted the urge to eat some of the inventory. What do you grab on the way out?
On my way out I always get a bag of our special Lolli and Pops mango gummi bears and a handful of our Belgian chocolate-covered cherries. They make a fantastic combination!
CORY YOUNG/Tulsa World