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Bennett Street Dairy: How James Meek and Cliff Baskin launched popular Sydney café

Is this the best cookie dough in Australia? Foodie mates who started their own cafés now turn over more than $3million a year – and it’s all because of a cult favourite

  • James Meek, 38, and Cliff Baskin, 35, are co-owners of two Sydney café
  • Bennett Street Dairy launched in 2015 followed by Blair Street Dairy in 2018 
  • The best mates started selling cookie dough during Covid-19 to stay afloat
  • It became a cult-favourite product and can be purchased from Woolworths  
  • The local businesses turnover more than $3million each year 


Two café-owner mates who have become known for their chunky cult-favourite cookie dough are pumping out almost a tonne a week. 

James Meek, 38, and Cliff Baskin, 35, brought their dream to life in November 2015 after investing $100,000 into the business venture. 

‘We were high on passion, low on money and wanted to give it a crack,’ Mr Meek told FEMAIL. 

Their Bennett Street Dairy and sister spot Blair Street Dairy have become popular go-to brunch destinations in Bondi in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.  

When the venues closed temporarily during Covid-19, the founders were left with 100kg of cookie dough in the fridge.

They started delivering the dough to customers stuck at home with their ‘loaded’ chocolate chip cookie ultimately keeping the business afloat during the pandemic. 

Cliff Baskin (left) and James Meek (right) launched Bennett Street Dairy in November 2015 and are known for for their chunky cult-favourite cookie dough

Bennett Street Dairy and sister spot Blair Street Dairy (pictured) have become popular go-to brunch destinations in Sydney's eastern suburb of Bondi

Bennett Street Dairy and sister spot Blair Street Dairy (pictured) have become popular go-to brunch destinations in Sydney’s eastern suburb of Bondi 

‘When I first tried the cookie I couldn’t believe how tasty it was; it caught the attention of customers as soon as we put it in the window,’ Mr Meek said. 

‘There’s no tricks or gimmicks, it’s just one of the tastiest cookies you’ll ever have.’  

They designed the packaging to match the business logo and printed out labels at Officeworks to use. 

The duo admitted they were ‘novices’ at graphic design and marketing, but have grown their Instagram account to gain a following of more than 21,000 people. 

The pair have a background in hospitality with Mr Meek working as a waiter and Mr Baskin working as a chef.

Their simple philosophy of working hard to offer customers a great experience paid off as the two venues turn over more than $2million per year and employ more than 30 staff. 

‘We knew we had to make it work, since there was a lot of money on the line, and were willing to work 60-hour weeks to do so,’ he said.  

When the venues closed down temporarily due to Covid-19, the founders were left with 100kg of cookie dough in the fridge, which they started delivering to customers stuck at home

They pump out one tonne of cookie dough each week to send out to customers

When the venues closed down temporarily due to Covid-19, the founders were left with 100kg of cookie dough in the fridge, which they started delivering to customers stuck at home

The pair have a background in hospitality with Mr Meek working as a waiter and Mr Baskin working as a chef

The pair have a background in hospitality with Mr Meek working as a waiter and Mr Baskin working as a chef

Mr Meek received the ‘unexpected’ call earlier this year from Woolworths to discuss a possible partnership trial.

He said the interest likely sparked after the café started stocking the 500g packs of cookie dough in smaller retailers – including Romeo’s IGA and Vic’s Meats.  

Customers can choose from the original cookie dough or white chocolate and macadamia cookie dough for $13 for 500g. 

The huge chunk of cookie dough makes between eight small to one giant cookie, allowing customers to decide for themselves how big or small they’d like the cookies to be.

It was ultimately the 'loaded' chocolate chip cookie that paved the way to success and kept the business afloat during the pandemic

It was ultimately the ‘loaded’ chocolate chip cookie that paved the way to success and kept the business afloat during the pandemic

Mr Meek received the 'unexpected' call earlier this year from Woolworths to discuss a possible partnership trial

Customers can choose from the original cookie dough or white chocolate and macadamia cookie dough for $13 for 500g

Mr Meek received the ‘unexpected’ call earlier this year from Woolworths to discuss a possible partnership trial. Customers can choose from the original cookie dough or white chocolate and macadamia cookie dough for $13 for 500g

‘We were surprised from the response because we’re not a huge marketing machine, simply a small business,’ Mr Meek said. 

‘But we’re thankful for the support from our loyal Sydney customers.’  

The cookie dough comes with easy-to-follow cooking instructions and will take no longer than 15 minutes to bake in the oven. 

The popular cookie dough is only available in select suburbs across Sydney, including Neutral Bay, Dee Why, Alexandria, Gordon, Lane Cove, Hornsby and Bondi Junction.

The cookie dough comes with easy-to-follow cooking instructions and will take no longer than 15 minutes to bake in the oven. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk