In addition to baking cupcakes, Jessica LaPointe enjoys creating superhero themed layered-cakes for special occasions such as birthday parties. Photo by Jessica LaPointe

A peach by any other name would still taste as sweet

By Justin K. Thomas

July 5, 2017

U.S. Navy veteran, Jessica LaPointe along with her husband, Jake opened Peachie Keen Pastry to follow her dreams of baking after creating desert for her family nearly five years ago.

“Well, I first became interested in baking around Thanksgiving of 2012 by baking pies,” LaPointe said. “I found that I really enjoyed working with my hands and seeing the joy it brought people to eat what I've made. So, the very next day I sent an application to Le Cordon Bleu [culinary school] in Atlanta. I was emailed within the hour, and I took that as a sign that this was what I was meant to do in life.”

LaPointe started pastry school in 2013 where she met her husband, who is now her business partner.

“Throughout our relationship, he became interested in baking,” she said, “and we started creating recipes together. After graduation, I began to get requests for small orders of cupcakes and pies here and there from friends and family, and we decided to just take a leap and formed Peachie Keen Pastry.”

The name of the company comes from the memories of LaPointe had with her grandmother and the love she has for her Southern heritage, she said.

“It just seemed to be memorable, and the term reminds me of my grandma,” LaPointe said. “She associated the phrase ‘peachie keen,’ with anything that’s very good and that’s what we want our clients to associate with our business; Goodness.”

David Ray Hutchins, a client of Peachie Keen, said that LaPointe’s pastries “topped” off his wedding in such a way that his family will always remember the business’ “goodness.”

“‘Peachy Keen Pastries’ really made our special day complete by providing us with a tasteful and beautiful wedding cake,” he said. “It was exactly what we wanted. They even went the extra mile making our son a special cupcake of his own.”

In addition to Peachie Keen’s familial connection, LaPointe’s father, Gene Watson, said that he’s really proud of his daughter’s accomplishment.

“I am thrilled to see her putting the hard work she put in at culinary school to great use,” Watson said. “I am very proud of her and what she is doing. I sincerely hope that her business becomes a bigger and better part of her life.”

LaPointe said that running a business while also working another job is hard, but is totally worth it because creating pastries is her passion.

“This business is more of a side project,” she said. “But nonetheless, it’s hard work. I would say the company gets more stressful around the holidays. One instance, my husband and I had to make 70 pies within three days. For me, baking is an outlet for my creativity, and that matters the most.”

LaPointe said that her military service helped her prepare for the challenges of creating a startup.

“The Navy itself may seem not to have anything to do with baking,” she said. “However, what I can say is the Navy gave me a sense of hard work, determination, pride in oneself, and a bit of charisma.”

LaPointe also said that if a person has entrepreneurial aspirations, they should never give up hope.

“I would suggest if you're considering starting a business, remember that it will be difficult,” she said. “But, stay positive and keep your ‘eye’ on the finish line. Owning a small business means early mornings, late nights, lots of hard work, sweat and tears. However, one day it will all be worth it. Just go for it. Even if you ‘fail,’ it's not the end of the world. At least you tried, and no one can ever say you didn't, and for that, you can keep your head held high.”

With over 200 and orders filled and growing, LaPointe said that Peachie Keen Pastry has a productive and dynamic future.

“The future of our business looks to be headed in the direction of doing farmers markets all over the state of Georgia,” LaPointe said. “We will also be competing in some baking competitions and attending bridal expositions. We have found that one of our favorite venues are weddings and we would love to do many more.”