Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint has a new neighbor in Cahaba Heights: a cookies and cream shop. To get the scoop (pun intended) on what the newly opened storefront offers, we chatted with Ben & Wendy Treadwell, the couple behind it—and the truck where it all began. Find them at 3029 Pump House Road.
How do you describe the Bendy’s concept?
It’s is a combination between an ice cream shop and a bakery. Our cookies and ice cream are all made from scratch in-house. Guests can choose any combination of ice cream and/or cookies. Our signature treat is a made-to-order ice cream sandwich with any two freshly baked cookies and a scoop of any ice cream. Our storefront will feature a few more items that our food truck does not offer, like milkshakes and sundaes.
Why did you decide to open a brick and mortar location in Cahaba Heights?
When we started the truck in spring 2016, we always had the goal of opening a storefront. We thought the food truck would be a great start for our business, and fortunately we have grown each year and can now open a storefront. We are happy to finally have a location to call home in Cahaba Heights. We love the community there and feel the location is central to the Greater Birmingham area.
What does the inside look like and what will it feature?
Our storefront features many of the same aesthetics from the Bendy’s food truck. We will feature barn wood on the counters and string lights hanging above. Guests have a front-row seat to our kitchen when they sit at the counter. For those looking for the perfect post on social media, we have a wall painted with our “Scoop. Eat. Repeat.” slogan, so guests can get a photo of their ice cream and cookies. We also have a back entrance leading to the Martin’s patio, so we hope everyone can come enjoy their barbecue and grab some ice cream and cookies for dessert.
What are some of the most popular Bendy’s flavors and some of your favorites?
Our most popular ice cream flavors are Sweet Cream (similar to vanilla), Cookie Butter and Strawberry Buttermilk. Our most popular cookies are Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodle and Pretzel Toffee. Ben likes to keep it simple with his flavor choices and finds that the cinnamon from the Snickerdoodle balances perfectly with the Sweet Cream ice cream. Wendy loves chocolate, and the Double Chocolate cookie delivers a brownie-like texture and flavor. The Cookies & Cream pairs perfectly and balances out the rich chocolate flavor.
What’s the short version of how Bendy’s got started?
Wendy has always enjoyed cooking and baking. In fact, before they started the food truck, she worked for Oxmoor House testing and developing recipes for cookbooks, like Cooking Light and Southern Living. Wendy saw a concept similar to Bendy’s in LA while visiting her cousin at UCLA and thought it would be a great idea to start in Birmingham one day. Once Ben and Wendy got married in 2014, the dream started to become a reality. They experimented with ice cream and cookie flavors at home and tested them out on friends. Eventually, they drove to Charleston to purchase their truck. Ben gradually worked on the truck with the help of friends, and in 2016 Bendy’s was born.