One mid-pandemic creation that’s seen an uptick in orders in recent months is an inventive new line of shortbread cookies stuffed with mochi. Meet mookies, the desserts from the nearly two-year-old company the Boiis Co., which is based out of Sunnyside, Queens, and recently launched nationwide shipping.
The Boiis Co. sells these cookies in three different flavors: an ube cookie with an ube mochi filling; a matcha cookie, which is also stuffed with ube mochi; and a salted caramel cookie teeming with caramel mochi. Every month, the company also introduces an additional flavor of the month. In February, Boiis Co. sold a strawberry cookie with a matcha mochi filling as part of a Valentine’s Day offering, and this month they’re selling a calamansi-flavored shortbread cookie stuffed with poppyseed mochi.
“We didn’t expect these to be such a hit,” says Rivy Oponda, the marketing director at Boiis Co., adding that they regularly sell about 15 to 20 boxes of varying sizes of the product each week. The online dessert shop launched the cookies last summer as restaurants began to open for outdoor dining in NYC and after a successful fall showing at several pop-ups in Manhattan, Boiis Co. has now become a full-fledged online business.
The Boiis Co. was founded in August 2019 by Kert Lasdoce and Aaron Troy Ortega, both of whom have about half a dozen years working in the restaurant industry in various positions. Lasdoce, who was most recently a bartender at En Japanese Brasserie in the West Village, came up with the concept after visiting Japan and sampling tofu mochi, which is essentially the same as regular mochi but with the addition of tofu, which gives it an extra chewy and dense texture.
Lasdoce wanted to recreate a version of that in New York City. The company launched with what it calls tofu mochi bites. “It is a healthier version of munchkins from Dunkin’ Donuts,” says Oponda, who joined the company soon after its launch. Boiis Co. makes it mochi using shiratamako or sweet rice flour, Lasdoce says, which is easier to work with as the bigger granules of shiratamako come together quickly with the addition of a little water to form a pliable dough. The mochi then acts as a base for other additions like almond flour and tofu that ultimately creates Boiis Co’s tofu mochi bites. The mochi bites are sold in black sesame, dark chocolate, and ube flavors and finished off with a drizzle of chocolate, matcha, or ube.
Boiis Co. held a few pop-ups at Lower East Side Portuguese spot Joey Bats Cafe in January and February 2020 selling tofu mochi bites and drinks, but the pandemic forced them to take a break. They returned last summer with the addition of the mookies. These shortbread-style cookies are made with a mix of cake flour and all purpose flour, along with sugar and European butter. Similarly, the mookies were showcased at various Lower East Side pop-ups last fall, including collaborations with the Filipino coffee shop Kabisera, and Boiis Co. was also featured in the Barkada Market as part of Filipino American Heritage Month last October.
Boiis Co. has since made a big push online, and starting in March, the company began shipping nationwide. Earlier this week, Boiis Co’s products also popped up at the Staten Island outpost of Filipino grocery store Phil-Am, and the founders hope the products will make their way to the Queens location of the grocery store as well. Customers looking to pick up the mochi bites and cookies in person can also do so on Tuesdays and Wednesday each week in front of the Rite Aid at the 46th Street Station in Sunnyside. Boiis Co. offers local deliveries in parts of Brooklyn and Queens on Thursdays as well.
To mark Women’s History Month, Boiis Co. is collaborating with NYC-based jewelry maker Rady Pheng. A pair of Pheng’s earrings will be sold with each order of the mookie six-pack ($25). In April, Boiis Co. is planning to unveil a basque cheesecake — they are currently flying off the shelves at bakeries in the San Francisco Bay Area — and a Thai tea mookie with a Thai tea filling for the month of April. There are plans for a brick-and-mortar location, Oponda says, but for now the group is focussed on expanding its online business.