owner + operator // sarah jo more
++ if i could have it my way, i'd be pouring coffee on the porch with my sisters all morning, and sipping manhattans with my husband in the afternoon. that's not the way it works, so i opened a bakeshop where i rise before the sun, mix endless amounts of dough, and sift powdered sugar over chocolate muffins. i'm a self taught passionate baker, finding joy in the little things (gold sprinkles, rose swirls, & a clean kitchen). i am here to introduce you to the best buttercream you'll ever have.
O U R S T O R Y
Let’s go back to 2010. I graduated college at UWSP. I grew to truly love Stevens Point. I had created a great group of friends and felt like I was part of this small knit community at age 21.
I was baking out of my rental apartment, collecting favorite recipes, throwing pretty elaborate gatherings centered around good food. In college I hosted ‘pie monday’ which is where you make pie, eat it with your friends ….. on a Monday.
I studied Family Consumer Science / Family Life Education in college with a minor in Food & Nutrition. Don’t get me wrong, but we were practicing how to make beef stroganoff in a lab - something I really didn’t have a passion for. My passion was dessert, and creating a space where good people gather & eat good food.
My two good friends, Nick & Kyle were baking out of an apartment as well - artisan sourdough. They carried this 200 lb. mixer up 2 flights of stairs and had wire cooling racks hanging out in the living room. I remember hand delivering loaves of bread to friends, co-workers, professors, & family who ordered (the night before Thanksgiving during a snowstorm).
The guys had a pretty lengthy email list going, and eventually maxed out their tiny apartment kitchen, while I was out delivering strawberry chocolate wedding tarts with my 1997 Pontiac Sunfire. Super classy.
We started to collaborate ideas on how we could rent a small certified kitchen to bake out of and actually make this into a small business. I remember meeting at this small building for sale in Plover (thinking it was so awesome, but the guys weren’t digging it). We then walked through the Stevens Point mall to see what they had to offer, and I was probably rolling my eyes the whole time. We were then soooo close to signing a lease on Main Street in Point. It was too much of a risk, and I have my parents to thank for helping me make practical decisions during that time.
We came across the space we are in now (formerly the “Garage” next to Emy J’s) and bless his heart, Guy Janssen took 3 young passionate kids seriously. He let us build a kitchen asap at a very affordable rate. He believed in us.
We opened the doors February 2011. Michael asked me the week before what I planned on making that day. I literally remember saying “I’ll figure it out.” I had the Oatmeal Cream Pies in mind, and I knew I was going to make some scones, but let’s be honest… who is going to show up day one?
Well, we had a line out the door and you could say I felt a little underprepared. You live & you learn — we baked more the next day, as much as we possibly could, with little experience in how to run a kitchen, or a register, or how to record our deposits in our dinky little book-keeping notebook (omg..) We had meetings every Monday to make sure we were all on the same page. We had goals for the week, tasks for each person, a list of what we needed to order, where our bank account was at, etc, etc. (shout out to the Pineries Bank - thanks Paul!)
I was working at the SPA Co-op at the time, trying to work a 2A-4P bakery shift, and then a closing shift at the Co-op. Eventually, you realize that sleep actually is important, so I decided to focus on the bakery full time, and really give it my all. We hired our first employee in 2012, and eventually started to pay ourselves, which I’m sure we celebrated with a piece of cake and probably a Point Special.
In 2014, my business partners & I decided to part ways. I bought out their positions and was then the sole owner of the MGB. We had 2 employees at the time, and I decided to hire 3 more to keep the efficiency of the bakery running smoothly. We now have 10 bakers, 1 helpful husband, and an office assistant! The bakery has grown to be a staple in this community. We get quite a few customers from out of town, passing through on their way up north - and for that, I am grateful. Our story will continue to develop. Find out more on our Instagram page — our ‘stories’ do tell!
In the midst of it all, I have never looked back. Every obstacle - you just figure it out. Make a decision and move forward. Deal with it, ask for help, learn from your mistakes, get better, be a leader, listen, tackle your fears. Go get em’ tiger.
Any other questions or comments — send em’ my way email@example.com - I’d love to hear from you.