FREDERICTON – The city will soon be getting a lot sweeter with the arrival of The Shake Shack Freddy to the city’s gourmet food scene.
The Shake Shack Freddy owner Julia Gilliard has left a secure, full-time job to bring towering Instagram-worthy milkshakes to sweet-toothed Frederictonians. She says she enjoyed the comfort and convenience of a regular job but felt like she could do more to live up to her potential and pursue something she would truly love.
With experience as a bakery manager, Gilliard says she has a good amount of know-how when it comes to running a business like this, but still has much to learn on the startup front. She is currently working with Futurpreneur to find a mentor who will help her through this phase.
“It was a huge struggle when I decided this was the route I was going to go. I’m going full force with this and I’m not just doing full-time at my regular job and then doing this on the side,” she says.
“[The job] gave me a regular paycheque and regular days off and regular vacations, but at the end of the day, I didn’t feel like I was living up to my full purpose so that’s why I decided it was more important for me to give Fredericton more options.”
Gilliard first discovered the idea of gourmet milkshakes on a trip to Calgary but says it took her some time to realize that the idea wasn’t something that only could succeed in bigger cities. She feels a city like Fredericton can embrace the concept and enjoy the treat as well.
Gilliard sees the fact that the city doesn’t have anything quite like these gourmet milkshakes as a bonus rather than an issue and feels she’s tapping into a relatively untouched market.
“New Brunswick has so much opportunity. I’m just starting to realize this now that I’m going in this direction,” she says. “New Brunswick makes it easier for young entrepreneurs like myself to bring these things to market because there’s nothing like that here.”
When asked whether part of the appeal of gourmet treats like these is how well they perform on platforms like Instagram, Gilliard agrees that it’s a factor.
“Social media is so prevalent in everyone’s lives and they like to highlight things in their feeds that are crazy and cool and things other people will find attractive as well. That definitely has a huge bearing on how well this will do,” she says.
“It’ll be worth the wait.”
Gilliard says she now has a menu finalized and location picked out on the Northside of the city but will be making sure everything is set in stone before any public announcements or opening dates.
This content was originally published here.