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The Very Best Cookie in the Whole Wide World

Kirstyn Shaw

2625 S Robertson Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

(424) 326-9123

SBDC Client’s Custom Cookies Fund Support for Ukraine


At the beginning of the Covid lockdown in 2020, Kirstyn Shaw started leaving homemade chocolate chip cookies at her friends’ doorsteps. People loved them, and she realized she had stumbled onto a business opportunity. She chose the name The Very Best Cookie in the Whole Wide World, and a new business was born.



Shaw came to the Pacific Coast Regional SBDC for assistance with her startup. She met with food and beverage industry specialist Aja Beard, who guided her through the process of formalizing her business, including obtaining an EIN and bank account. Beard informed Shaw of the licenses and permits she would need. She shared critical tips, like the fact that she should get a cottage food license to bake at home but would need to rent a commercial food prep space to sell out of state.

The entrepreneur also met marketing advisor Sahar Andrade for comprehensive coaching over the course of several sessions. They worked on developing her web and social media presence with an eye toward a unified marketing strategy. Beard contributed expertise on choosing packaging and food photography to fit the business’s brand identity. Shaw also personalized her outreach with a campaign for an issue that is important to her. She pledged to donate a week’s worth of sales to Black Lives Matter. Online news site The Hustle featured the campaign, and the attention brought in new customers to the still-tiny but rapidly growing business.

Finding the right commercial kitchen has continually been a challenge because the business is scaling quickly. The cookie company has required more and more space to accommodate increasing sales, but renting too much space would cut into profits. Sharing space with other food preparers was one way to handle this, and Beard introduced Shaw to several other SBDC clients looking for similar opportunities. Beard also introduced Shaw to many commercial kitchens, and Beard even toured a kitchen on behalf of her client when the owner would not let Shaw visit before she had formalized her business. But now Shaw has reached the point that she needs to find her own retail space. Shaw’s advisor has been working with her to evaluate opportunities to lease spaces previously used by another bakery or even to buy a business.



Despite the challenges of the pandemic, The Very Best Cookie has steadily grown both sales and profit margins. Beard connected Shaw with wholesale vendors and recommended corporate accounts with shipping companies, so as the company grew, costs per unit fell, increasing her profits. Beard also connected her client with SBDC advisor Georgette Huckaby to assist her with leveling up her bookkeeping skills. 

Shaw has added new recipes, including vegan and gluten-free options. She is collaborating with a musician to sell a special recipe with a portion of the proceeds going to UNICEF for Ukraine. Her company is now selling dough wholesale to local cafes. Of course, Beard knew restaurant owners who might wish to buy the dough and facilitated the connection. The Very Best Cookie was recently featured on KTLA’s morning news. Shaw has developed enough experience and skill to share with newer entrepreneurs. She sat on a panel of founders for the SBDC Restaurant Academy and gave away The Very Best Cookie in the Whole Wide World – the cookie, not the company – to a lucky raffle winner.

Aja Beard is one of the many SBDC advisors with deep knowledge of a particular industry. Whether they are just starting out or have years of experience behind them, small business owners can access one-on-one advising free of charge with advisors like her. Subject-matter experts in areas such as marketing and finance are also available. And the SBDC hosts workshops and training series like the Restaurant Academy on a regular basis.

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