The Icing On Top
Gigi’s Cupcakes Owner Talks Success of Northside Location
Photographer: Ron Wise
It’s called the Gigi’s Cupcakes signature “Gigi’s Swirl” and it’s what local franchise owner Lory Pappas says makes Gigi’s Cupcakes special.
Gigi’s Cupcakes started as a small, single-location bakery in Nashville, Tenn. in 2008. The store was opened by Gina “Gigi” Butler, who decided to pursue entrepreneurship after a decade of chasing a music career in Nashville. Butler used family recipes to develop the menu, and the store’s popularity grew quickly.
When Lory and Nick Pappas tried the cupcakes in Nashville years ago, shortly after the store opened, they knew the bakery could grow into more than just a single-location cupcake shop. The Pappas were persistent in visiting Gigi’s Cupcakes until Butler finally began franchising the business. Today, there are nearly 100 locations in 27 states. Gigi’s Cupcakes plans to open 10 more locations in the coming year, according to gigiscupcakesfranchise.com.
Nick and Lory Pappas, and business partners Paul and Kathy Arduini, opened their first Gigi’s Cupcakes location in May 2010. Gigi’s Cupcakes locations in the Greater Indianapolis area now include 8981 E 116 St. in Fishers and 8487 Union Chapel Rd. #440 Indianapolis, near The Fashion Mall at Keystone.
Lory Pappas is based at the Fishers location and Paul Arduini runs the Indianapolis location.
Lory says even though she spent several years working as a nurse, she has always enjoyed baking, worked in a bakery in high school and has always baking at home, so the business was a great fit for her and her family. Lory says she often works 12 hour days from 4 a.m.-4 p.m. and jokes that she is the “butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker.”
“It’s hard work,” she says, but she enjoys that “no day is the same.”
The stores have all become highly successful, and each location not only sells cupcakes and other sweets at the store but is available for catering desserts for special occasions such as weddings, baby showers, birthday parties, office parties and more.
Pappas says they try to serve the community by donating leftover cupcakes to local non-profit organizations and has enjoyed meeting members of the community through the business.
“I’ve met some really neat people,” she says.
Cupcake flavors include Wedding Cake, Scarlett’s Red Velvet, Midnight Magic, Strawberry Shortcake, White Midnight Magic, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Double Stuff, Lemon Icebox, Confetti Fun, Chocolate Salted Carmel, Triple Chocolate Torte (Gluten Friendly) and Wedding Cake (Gluten Friendly). Fall seasonal specials include S’Mores, Haystack, Pumpkin Spice Latte and Pumpkin Spice Latte (Gluten Friendly).
The store also sells signature stuffed cookies, mini cupcakes and more.
Store hours vary. Visit gigiscupcakesusa.com for more information.