UPPER EAST SIDE — An Upper West Side eatery specializing in creative twists to rice crispy treats is launching its second outpost on the east side, but this time with adult tastes in mind, the owners said.
While the owners of Treat House, Chris and Jennifer Russell, had designed their first store as a spot for kids, they're hoping to draw an older crowd with the opening of their new location at 1566 Second Ave., which opened on Monday.
The treats — which include flavors like birthday cake, peanut butter and jelly and s'mores — will remain mostly the same, but the layout of the new store caters to a more sophisticated audience, with a park-like seating area in the back and another section with walls made of real bark that can be converted into a party space, Chris Russell said.
"We realized that the majority of the people who consume our treats are adults — fairly sophisticated, fashionable adults that don’t necessarily need to be sitting in a tree house with license plates or sports banners," Russell said. "We wanted to design a store that was more elegant. There is a difference in vibe from the Upper West Side to the Upper East Side and we wanted to reflect the neighborhood here."
Treat House will also serve the rice treats in lolly pop form, as well as ice-cream bars made of chocolate-dipped rice crispy treats. During certain seasons, egg nog, apple and pumpkin-inspired varieties will be available.
Most of their desserts are kosher, gluten-free and dairy-free, Russell said. Treat House's crispy rice treats are $2.50 a piece and $5 for two. Packages are also available.
The Russells, who've been married for 16 years, first got the idea for Treat House after their two sons, Daniel and Eli, had to raise money for a charity, and the couple ended up making $300 in two hours selling their "jazzed up" crispy rice treats.
"It was a great foil to incorporate classic dessert flavors," he said. "Anything you can do with a cupcake, you can do with crispy rice treats."
In the spirit of Treat House's inception, the couple will continue to ask their customers to donate to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on their website. For every $15 their customers donate, they will send a box of 12 treats to someone suffering with either disease.
The couple plan to open another location next year at the Westfield World Trade Center mall and they already run a smaller kiosk at the Garden State Plaza in Paramus, NJ.
Its Upper East Side location is open from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.