Bake sale in Coral Gables for hospitality relief fund brings in big bucks

Another Putting on the Pounds bake sale to be held Sunday

CORAL GABLES, Fla. – A bake sale like none other during these times of social distancing happened last weekend in South Florida, and it was such a big hit, they’re doing it again this weekend.

“People went crazy,” South Beach Wine and Food founder and director Lee Schrager told Local 10 News via Skype. “There must’ve been 90 to 100 cars waiting on the street where we live in the Gables.”

Schrager joined forces with Miami cookie mogul Andrew Gonzalez to sell boxes of Andrew’s famous Night Owl cookies last Sunday.

“The Sugar Daddy chocolate chip cookie, of course we had to throw in the Ave Maria in the mix, the Dirty Diana -- it's a chocolate chip cookie stuffed with a lot of Nutella,” Gonzalez said.

Night Owl cookies sell out during bake sale fundraiser in Coral Gables. (WPLG)

The boxes of deliciousness sold for $20 a pop -- all to raise desperately needed money for the hospitality relief fund to help our local restaurants and bars stay in business during quarantine.

“These are chefs who have served us over so many years, and now it’s our chance to serve them and be there for them,” Schrager said.

So far, the fund has raised over $1.6 million to help local restaurants and bars pay their employees during the current shutdown. But, it’s much more than that as our local economy food chain is at stake.

“It’s the purveyors who they buy their food from, the vegetable purveyors,” Schrager said. “It’s one big domino effect. If these restaurants can’t get open and can’t make it through this, it’s going to be a huge, devastating blow to the community.”

But the community is stepping up.

The bake sale was a huge hit as 200 boxes of cookies literally flew off shelves in minutes.

“Fifteen minutes after we opened, we sold out,” Gonzalez said. “Miami really came out in droves to support this effort. It was incredible.”

In the end, $20,000 was raised thanks to Badia Spices, which matched the $10,000 they made off the cookie sales and donations.

And for a young entrepreneur, it was a chance to give back in a big way.

“It was such a no-brainer when Lee asked me to be part of this. I had to give back,” Gonzalez said. “Being able to help the local restaurants that are suffering right now is everything.”

The next Putting on the Pounds bake sale will take place from noon-4 p.m. Sunday, May 3, at 517 Hardee Road in Coral Gables. The drive-through bake sale will also feature baked ziti from Machialina, a Cuban food survival box from Finka, cocktail mixology sets from Chat Chow TV and Lee’s famous biscuits.

Click here to donate to the hospitality relief fund or to get information about grant applications.

About the Author:

Louis Aguirre is an Emmy-award winning journalist who anchors weekday newscasts and serves as WPLG Local 10’s Environmental Advocate.