Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Nicole Shaw-Provillon, Founder and Co-Owner of Kurly Kürtősh, located in Nutley, NJ, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Kurly Kürtősh is an experiential boutique bakery and caterer specializing in a popular Hungarian street food called kürtőskalács (also known as kürtősh/chimney cake). We use the purest international ingredients with authentic old-world craftsmanship. We sell kürtősh, but we are in the business of spreading happiness through the deliciousness of this unfamiliar pastry. Our customers are people who seek out unique experiences and appreciate quality food.

Tell us about yourself

I am a wife and a mother of 2 teen children, so my life is full of excitement! Professionally, I am a former Certified Public Accountant and Brand Marketer. I moved to Hungary in 2013 from NJ, and while living there, I discovered this popular pastry that tastes delicious but is unheard of in the United States. When I realized I wouldn't be able to find them near my home in NJ, I decided to introduce this specialty to Americans. Why? Because almost everyone loves kürtősh - the prep & baking process, its flavors, and its uniqueness. Our shop draws in such a diverse demographic that it is so exciting to see who we will meet every day and hear what stories they will share. But what's most motivating is to watch so many people fall in love with kürtősh.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest accomplishments are successfully creating a space that is warm and welcoming and sharing unfamiliar street food that joyously brings people together. But I couldn't have done it alone - the unwavering support I have received from strangers to family has been nothing short of magical.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

For me, the hardest thing is juggling my business with my personal life. Being present and influential in my children's life has been a priority from the beginning, and it can be VERY difficult to balance the two.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Make sure you are deeply passionate about your space because that's what will keep you motivated during the ups and downs.
  2. Become the expert in your space - you will gain authority, support, and positioning that will be hard to challenge.
  3. Be kind (not nice). Kindness is about being a service to others - it's the right thing to do, and if you are genuine - it feels good too! In business, we all want to win, and if we work together, it generally results in a positive outcome for everyone.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.