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Wonderland cookie dough opens

By CHUCK BALLARO - | Jun 29, 2021

Some of the cookie dough flavors on sale at Wonderland Cookie Dough & Ice Cream.

Remember when you were a kid and you couldn’t wait for mom to bake chocolate chip cookies, so you sampled the dough?

Well, now there is a new cookie dough and ice cream place you can go in North Fort Myers and eat all the cookie dough you might want and not have to sneak a single bite.

Wonderland Cookie Dough & Ice Cream at 5781 Bayshore Road, officially opened Sunday, and has a variety of cookie doughs well as dozens of flavors of ice cream.

Jeff Smith, owner of Wonderland, ran his company out of a food truck for two years (and still utilizes a truck) before going to a brick-and-mortar business.

“We’re new. We’re a typical ice cream shop and then some. We wanted to step outside the box and when they come inside the store, it’s not just an ice cream shop,” Smith said.

A spot for people to take selfies with their favorite flavors at Wonderland Cookie Dough & Ice Cream at 5781 Bayshore Road.

A chance meeting with the owner of the cookie dough company led him on his path, Smith said.

“We went to Nashville for a gymnastics event with my daughter and found a business called ‘No-Bake Cookie Dough.’ We tried it and it was delicious,” Smith said. “As a businessman, I wondered what it would cost to franchise this.”

At $75,000, it was cost prohibitive. A few weeks later, after another gymnastics event for another daughter in Daytona, Smith’s fiancé was craving cookie dough, and found Wonderland in Celebration.

“We found out that the man working there was the CEO of the company. He has more of a wholesaling business and that cost only $5,000,” Smith said. “He worked in that shop one week per year and we wouldn’t be here if he had not been there that day.”

The food truck opened June 2019 and they have done hundreds of events and been on TV to promote their product, since Smith knows many of the local news personalities in the area.

When the owner decided to leave the business, he asked Smith if he wanted to take it over. Smith “bit the bullet” and took it over, found a place to make the cookie dough, and opened up their new shop after month of delays due to COVID.

They have 15 cookie dough flavors (with some seasonal ones thrown in), all made fresh daily, and 26 flavors of Royal Scoop ice cream (based in Bonita Springs) as well as milkshakes, sundaes, waffles, floats and much more.

“We have Back Home Brownie sundaes that are huge. We have Boba tea which is a Japanese drink the kids like, all types of cookie dough sundaes, dessert nachos, which are waffle cone pieces broken up with ice cream or cookie dough on top,” Smith said. “We have people who haven’t seen these flavors in 30 years, and we want to bring back old-time memories.”

Smith said things have gone beyond their expectations, as people have been lining up for Wonderland products. Staff has been working overtime to keep up.

“It’s been unbelievable. We’re so excited. We put in the hard work and now, it’s finally paying off,” Smith said.

Once they get can determine the popularity of their offerings locally, they hope to open two or three more stores in the next few years.

Wonderland is open Monday through Thursday from noon to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from noon to 9 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 7 p.m. For more information visit: https://www.restaurantji.com/fl/north-fort-myers/wonderland-cookie-dough-and-ice-cream-/