Text by E. Brooke Watson | Photography by Anna Grace Photography
For Memphians, life is getting sweeter by the day, thanks to a family-owned confectionery that’s become a staple in the community since it opened in 2013.
If you ask Kristi Kloos, who co-owns Frost Bake Shop with her husband Bill Kloos, Jr., where the magic really began, she’ll tell you about the early days when the beloved bakery was just a dream in the hearts of her in-laws, Bill Sr. and Lynne Kloos. In 2004, that dream began to blossom from their home kitchen, and was affectionately named “All American Sweets.”
Soon Bill Jr., a chef by trade, found himself living in and working in Memphis, the same city where his parents had recently relocated, and the recipe for the ultimate success of Frost Bake Shop came together. “Bill’s parents loved to cook and bake, and he and his father always wanted to start a business together. I think it all started from there. After moving to Memphis, Bill Sr. and Lynne were all in. It was time to start selling some cakes,” says Kristi.
With his parents there to help the developing business get off the ground, Bill Jr. continued his work as a chef, all the while using his restaurant experience and local contacts to assist All American Sweets as it grew. Kristi recalls, “In the beginning, it was really just Bill Sr. and Lynne doing all of the cold calls and production; Bill Jr. was just that person to be a resource to help, because he had his own full-time job. He would help his dad with restaurant contacts, helping him get his foot in the door with different people, so from 2004 to 2010, they ran the entire thing from their apartment.”
Fast forward to today and the business has grown dramatically. Frost Bake Shop, as it’s now known, has established two locations in just three years, and it’s clear that the Kloos family’s collective passion and hard work have paid off. The recipes they’ve lovingly curated have earned them a devoted following, both in the Memphis area and across the nation.
After the initial success of Frost’s first location in East Memphis’ Laurelwood Shopping Center, Williams-Sonoma sought out a partnership with the bake shop in 2015. While serving as the exclusive sweets vendor for the high-end kitchenware brand was a mutually beneficial relationship, it was the devoted patronage of their guests that catapulted Frost toward their next move, an expansion to Collierville last fall.
While the business is still in its infancy, Kristi says that commitment to customers and passion for authentic recipes will always be Frost’s main focus. “I think there are a few things that set us apart. Number one, we make everything from scratch, and we own the recipes. We always use all real, fresh ingredients. For instance, we make our own strawberry puree that goes in our strawberry cake… there’s about a pound of strawberries in one nine-inch cake. The second thing is that our full menu is available every single day, so no matter when you’re craving your favorite dessert, you can count on us to have it.”
Even more importantly, the Kloos family wants every visit to feel special for their customers. “We really try to encourage not just having great food, but having great service. That you feel that warm fuzzy feeling—that you’re excited about your desserts, but you feel good about your transaction and your experience here, too, because it’s a happy place. So, as much as possible, we try to pair excellent treats with exceptional service.”
Judging by the way business has grown, that philosophy is paying off. The new location attracts customers for not only the treats; brides are flocking in for wedding cake consultations, crafters love Frost’s cake decorating workshops, and hostesses are taking advantage of the newly opened party room for showers and celebrations of all kinds.
Open Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.- 9 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Frost Bake Shop is located at
394 S. Grove Park Road, Memphis & 1016 W. Poplar Avenue, Collierville
For more information, visit www.frostbakeshop.com or phone 901.682.4545