Success Story restaurant Cookies Cream Berlin
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Full ownership over restaurant data to optimize guest experiences

Owner Cookies Cream Berlin has always taken guest relationships seriously. Credit: Marcus Zumbanssen

Whether it’s an illicit bar or a Michelin-starred restaurant, Cookie Heinz Gindullis has always taken guest relationships seriously. For his restaurants Cookies Cream and Crackers, he’s making use of Formitable’s full data transparency and ownership to deliver memorable guest experiences.

Heinz Gindullis, better known as Cookie, opened his first underground bar in a basement in 1994. It was always packed with regulars on Tuesdays and Thursdays: restaurant folks who worked on the weekend. For Cookies, it’s always been about guest relationships: “Back then, there was no internet, and all guests came through word of mouth or flyers.”

After some time running the illustrious nightclub Cookies, Cookie got bored and opened his first illegal restaurant in 2002. Then Cookies Cream opened in 2007, above the new Cookies club – legal, by then – and became the first vegetarian restaurant in Germany to be awarded a Michelin star in 2018. Cookie also runs restaurant Crackers in the space of the now-closed Cookies Club, and Studio C, a location for large events. Cookie: “Bringing in regular guests has always been our most important goal. What is better than coming ‘home’ to a restaurant and knowing the staff, being recognized, and having a great time? That said, Berlin has changed, and we also welcome a lot of visitors to the city who come to our restaurant.”

Data ownership

Cookie and his team use different technologies to maximize a personal touch. They have their own database, called “The Brain”, which is connected to their POS, phone system, and reservation system. Retaining ownership of guest data was a key factor in switching to Formitable. They provided an API that our developer used to easily set up a connection between Formitable and our centralized system. Cookie: “This is the main reason I love Formitable. The platform works with our database now. When we were switching reservation systems, we tried out a few, but we chose Formitable because of how it worked and the professionality of the company.”

Overview feature versus table plan

Cookie and his team were first quite reluctant to choose Formitable because it did not offer a table plan feature. “We’re glad we did go with Formitable because we found out this feature is not that important. If you work a lot with the system, the overview feature is much more useful – you can see the time slots and when you can add a new table. It might be difficult at first for someone who is just starting in the restaurant because they have to know the table layout. But to be honest, none of the staff miss it now, and they think it’s great to work with.”

Skyrocketing gift vouchers sales

Another feature of Formitable that Cookie had not expected to be a big hit was the ease with which gift vouchers could be sold – a process that was quite complicated before. “Voucher sales skyrocketed. When we first installed this feature for Cookies Cream, we were so surprised by how many vouchers we sold, directly through the website and through a link on the ‘thanks for your visit’ email after every restaurant visit.”

About Cookies Cream Restaurant 

Instagram @cookiescreamberlin
Location Berlin, Germany

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