By Christine Graf
In the two years since Shelly Walker relocated Finishing Touches Home Décor from Wilton to 450 East High St. in Malta, she and husband and business partner, Doug Dockendorf, have been very busy.
After moving the interior design and home décor shop, Dockendorf, the owner of several local businesses including Priority Electrical, redesigned a small section at the back of the property.
In June 2020, they opened an outside-service ice cream shop called Cookies & Cream in the space. During the busy summer months, Cookies & Cream employs a staff of 10 part-time employees.
In addition to hard and soft serve ice cream, they serve sundaes, shakes, floats, non-fat yogurt, Dole Whip, and ice cream cookies out of four windows. Outdoor seating is available, and landscaping is being added to the property to further enhance its already attractive outdoor space.
Customers can also enjoy their ice cream while strolling in Collamer Park which adjoins the property.
In April, Walker and Dockendorf opened a third business—a coffee bar—under the roof of their historic building. Built in 1835, it is one of only five properties in Malta to be placed on the National Registry of Historic Places by the U. S. Department of the Interior.
The Coffee Bar at Finishing Touches serves a variety of beverages include latte, espresso, cappuccino, hot chocolate and iced coffee. Homemade cookies and brownies are also available, and muffins and bagels will most likely be added to the Coffee Bar’s offerings in the near future.
“We also have an affogato which is vanilla soft-serve ice cream with espresso that people are really loving,” said Walker. “We also have a cookies and cream iced frappe which is a frozen drink with crushed up cookies and creams cookies.”
Although the coffee bar is located inside of the store, the coffee is meant to be enjoyed outside. It is for that reason that inside seating is limited.
Outside coffee service will be available during hours that Cookies & Cream is open, orders can be placed at any one of the shop’s four ice cream windows.
“The addition of The Coffee Bar to Finishing Touches is just an added feature we offer to the people of Malta who love coffee,” said Dockendorf. “We have everything that Starbucks has. Eventually we will have a coffee carhop so that you will be able to drive up and order, and we will bring the coffee right to you. We are hoping to start the carhop service at the beginning of July.”
Carhop orders will be placed at the drive-up area, and in the future, customers will be able to order through an online app. An additional two to three employees will be hired to staff the coffee and carhop operation. Carhop service will be available between 7 a.m. to noon.
According to Walker, business at Finishing Touches has grown since the introduction of Cookies & Cream.