MANCHESTER, NH – The only thing sweeter than living your dream is when you get to live your dream 2.0.
Such is the case for Jose and Angela Mojica, who own and operate Dulces Bakery. What began for them as a small sweet shop on the city’s West Side back in 2015 has grown to be everything they ever dreamed.
They will open at their expanded location, in the old Post Office Fruit Luncheonette at Chestnut and Amherst streets, starting May 1.
Since their humble beginnings they’ve weathered all kinds of challenges – baby No. 3, losing their lease, finding a new place with an industrial kitchen and counter space and, finally, securing a place big enough to serve food and seat patrons.
It’s been a slow process, but the Mojicas have relied on their faith – and incredible work ethic – to get there.
When they reopened Dulces in October of 2018 at 424 Chestnut St. they were happy to be back. But it was a much smaller space than their West Side shop, and in these four years that follow, their dreams had expanded.
Thanks to some great negotiating by the Mojicas and an assist from their upstairs neighbors, they were able to secure the old Post Office Fruit Luncheonette, which adjoins their current space at 424 Chestnut. Now they have room for refrigerators and supplies, counter space to bake and cook, including authentic Spanish breakfast and lunch dishes, and seating at cafe tables for customers inside.
Last week Jose and Angela were sacrificing school vacation week with their three kids to get the plumbing and electric installed and up to code inside the new space, which has been dormant for several years. The kids, who have grown up with the bakery, didn’t seem to mind, requesting some of mom’s “award-winning” cookies (that, according to Hippo’s Best of 2019) as they played video games in a makeshift kids corner behind the counter area.
For Jose and Angela, the ambitious expansion fulfills the original dream, of capitalizing on Angela’s talent for baking and Jose’s gift for promoting his wife’s delectable goodies. There is no shortage of hustle – the Mojica’s have devoted themselves to excellence, and have already proven themselves a fan favorite, not just with Hippo’s cookie lovers, but also winning big at the 2016 Chocolate Lover’s Fantasy competition, People’s Choice for Angela’s sumptuous tres leches cake, and Best Booth, for their variety of samples and kick-ass display.
Angela bakes custom cakes for any occasion, but also cranks out daily rations of cupcakes, cookies, flan, tres leches cups to-go, cake pops, and an array of other confections. They’ve also been adding savory dishes to the menu, and plan to add cheesecakes. You can also grab a cold-brew coffee.
Making the transition, from the cramped quarters on Chestnut Street to the expanded version of Dulces, cost them several days’ business, which was a tough call for the Mojicas. But it was the only way to get it done right, says Jose. Moving, cleaning, packing, unpacking, reorganizing, and getting things in working order was the priority. They have already established a following, and every day new customers find them. They are optimistic that this new incarnation will be the key to their long-awaited success.
They will be opening their doors for the first time on May 1, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. for now, but they say they expect to expand their hours as they can, to coordinate with city happenings and reach as many customers as possible.