It all began in Bangkok, Thailand. Savie Arnold, owner of what is now Sweetie Pie by Savie, always had a love for baking. Arnold quickly turned that passion and dream into a reality two years ago when she moved her growing bakery business from Bangkok, Thailand to Athens, GA.
After searching for the perfect location, Arnold kept driving by the little, green, tin roof building on the east side of Athens that somehow continued to catch her eye. She found out that it was available, and that new location is now Sweetie Pie by Savie bakery located at 150 E. Whitehall Road, Athens, GA 30605. Arnold knew from the moment she stepped foot into her soon-to-be bakery that it immediately felt like home.
“We knew we had to start small, and this place had the exact feeling that I wanted,” Arnold said.
Sweetie Pie by Savie officially opened its doors on July 6th, 2015 and right from the start Arnold knew she wanted to infuse her Thailand heritage into her baked goods. Arnold has savory and sweet items ranging from fresh baked breads, scones, croissants, quiche, cookies, pies, and cakes. Along with the common bakery items, Arnold also makes wedding cakes and specialty cakes for special occasions.
“I knew I wanted the Asian cuisine in my bakery, because that is who I am and where I grew up. In Asia you see a lot of fruit filling, therefore in my cakes you will see lots of fruit incorporated. We have chocolate peach, strawberry surprise, and pineapple sunrise filling just for some examples. We also have taro cake which is not found easily,” Arnold detailed about her cakes.
“In Asia we use a lot of taro and tiramisu in our cakes, but in our bakery items I like to use turmeric in a variety of our cookies. Turmeric is an herb that is good for your health, so I enjoy adding it to our baked goods,” Arnold said.
Jeff Lightsey, a regular customer of Sweetie Pie by Savie, likes to change it up every time he comes into the bakery and Arnold even created a special treat for his son’s birthday.
“I come in twice a week, and I like to mix it up. But I will say one of my favorites is the Thai tea latte or coffee with a cookie. I also had her make a cobbler for my son’s birthday because he doesn’t like cake. It was a peach cobbler and it was awesome,” Lightsey said.
Arnold’s love for baking does not stop with cakes or baked goods, but it also extends into baking pies. From November to January, Sweetie Pie by Savie will make two pies every week due to the seasonal time of the year. A crowd favorite is always the pecan pie. During this time period they make 16 pies for the store and 30 pies for special orders, adding up to roughly 50 pies.
To keep up with the demand on pies, Arnold hired Luna Bucataio to be her right hand woman when it comes to cakes. Bucataio also helped Arnold take an original goal of two cakes a week up to eight cakes a week.
“I work Monday through Friday in the mornings and I help with everything. However, my favorite part about my job is decorating the cakes,” Bucataio said.
The success of the bakery has grown tremendously since opening two years ago, with a 30% growth rate from 2015 to 2016. Sweetie Pie by Savie did not only meet the sales goal for 2016, but it exceeded every goal Arnold set.
With business steadily increasing, Arnold also knew she needed some assistance running the store. Alex Haun, a student at the University of Georgia, has been working at Sweetie Pie by Savie the past year.
“I had some free time, and I decided to work here and I love it. I have helped decorate a few cakes that are very, very simple but I normally keep my hands out of here and clean the dishes,” Haun added with a laugh.
Arnold’s Thai heritage flows through Sweetie Pie by Savie whether that is through paintings on the walls, decorations, lattes, or baked into a teriyaki oatmeal cookie.