There’s another way to satisfy your sweet tooth in Jackson and it’s appeared in the most likely place.
Mursell’s Sweet Shop, a candy shop in the Gaslight Alley known for the motto “Life in Jackson is pretty sweet,” celebrated its one-year anniversary by adding a soda fountain to its sugary arsenal.
“The soda fountain was really the brainchild of our manager Sara Nicholson,” said John Frechette, who, along with his partner Christian Burch, owns Mursell’s, as well as Made and both Mountain Dandy locations.
Nicholson has been in the soda game all her life. She was born in Arizona where her family ran a Sonic drive-in.
“Sonic is known for the cherry limeade, so I wanted to include that at Mursell’s,” Nicholson said.
When she was 10 her family moved to Idaho and ran a diner with a soda fountain. Sodas at her family’s diner inspired the sodas at Mursell’s.
The fountain, tucked in the back of the candy store, offers six to eight composed soda options at a time, although visitors are welcome to make their own combinations. Early favorites include a sparkling limeade with Sprite and fresh lime juice, available in huckleberry, cranberry, and cherry variations, as well as the “The Old Faithful,” root beer enriched with half-and-half and topped with marshmallow fluff.
“There’s also a couple of sweet old ladies who just like to come in for their Diet Coke fix,” Frechette said.
Designing the look and feel of the fountain’s offerings was a team effort.
Frechette cared deeply about getting the cup and straw just so.
The final choice, cups with vertical stripes matching the store’s painted floor, can be seen by window shoppers around the square, serving as whimsical guerrilla advertising.
Frenchette was also thrilled to find a compostable straw, to keep conscientious sippers and sea turtles happy.
For Burch the ice choice was crucial. Ultimately the team chose large pebble ice for its ability to quickly chill soda and for its satisfying crunch. Nicholson took the lead on designing flavors.
Mursell’s continues to do busy business on the candy side of things as the team works through its second summer. In addition to locals and first-time visitors, Frechette has started to notice those every-summer visitors returning to his store.
He shared the praise with community partners that have helped spread awareness of the store. Outpost, a major property management firm, includes Mursell’s sweets in their welcome baskets, and Jedediah’s at the Airport carries a broad assortment of Mursell’s branded goodies.
As the store continues to build its offerings, Frechette wants to focus on keeping things unique.
“We don’t carry something just because it’s trendy,” he said, “and we don’t like to carry things you can get at any supermarket. We want this to be a curated experience.” ￼
Sara Nicholson mixes a soda at Mursell's Sweet Shop. A number of the recipes were adapted from Nicholson's family diner in Jerome, Idaho.
The "Gaslight Alley" features Sprite, cherry and vanilla, and is served with a compostable straw