Jason Fletcher and his partner Anil Prasad fulfilled his childhood dream of opening a restaurant with the recent opening of Fletcher’s Ice Cream in Northeast’s Sheridan neighborhood.
After 10 years at a pharmaceutical manufacturing company, Fletcher left his job and decided he finally wanted to do something he loved.
“I wanted to do something where I felt happy at the end of the day,” he said.
Often working 18 or 20 hours a day, Fletcher admitted there have been days where it was hard to keep going. However, he said having happy customers makes it worth it.
“I may be tired, but I feel fulfilled,” he said.
Much of Fletcher’s motivation for getting into the restaurant business was based on his desire to provide good customer service for a quality product.
“We are here for our customer. Our customers aren’t here for us,” he said. “We love people and we want to make sure they get a good product.”
Fletcher always planned on serving coffee, but knew he needed to add something more because of how competitive the coffee market is.
“We knew if we just did coffee there was a really good chance we could go under,” he said.
When asked why he chose ice cream, he said, “because ice cream makes people happy.”
Fletcher said he had googled products that make people happy and found ice cream to be a common answer. He researched how to make ice cream and tinkered around with some homemade ice cream makers.
“Literally a year and a half ago I had no idea how to make ice cream,” he said. “Everybody we knew was getting sick of [it] by the time we got here.”
Fletcher said he is most proud of the quality of his ice cream.
“We’ve spent a lot of time crafting a product that is the best we can make for our customers,” he said.
The shop makes all its own ice cream and all ingredients are locally sourced and natural.
Being lactose intolerant himself, Fletcher wanted to provide ice cream anyone can eat.
Though his products still contain dairy, Fletcher said, “we have a really clean label for our dairy mix… and it doesn’t make you sick. So, I can eat my ice cream and I’ve had a lot of people try it and they’re like ‘yeah, for some reason I’m not getting sick.’”
For those not willing to risk it, “Talia’s Birthday Cake” is made with a vegan coconut milk base. “Doggie” contains peanut butter, bananas and plain yogurt and can actually be served to your four-legged friends.
However, it is a mistake that is the best seller. Fletcher explained his white chocolate raspberry wasn’t tasting like raspberry so he added a swirl of wild berry.
To sample “Wild White Chocolate,” or any of Fletcher’s 16 rotating handmade flavors, stop by 6 a.m.–10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday at 1509 Marshall St. NE. The shop is closed Monday.