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Baking with a passion ... staying focused on desserts paying off for new startup

She went from farmer's markets to having a downtown shop in less than a year

Veronica Stendahl, owner of Antler Baking Co., talks about her business on Thursday, March 8, in Bellingham. Antler Baking Company shares a space with Wood's Coffee inside the Flatiron Building on Prospect Street.
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Veronica Stendahl, owner of Antler Baking Co., talks about her business on Thursday, March 8, in Bellingham. Antler Baking Company shares a space with Wood's Coffee inside the Flatiron Building on Prospect Street.

Veronica Stendahl was ready for her own bakery business, but wanted to start small and build it up. Working with another local company has given her a boost.

In December Stendahl opened Antler Baking Co. inside the Woods Coffee shop in the Flatiron Building. Antler offers a variety of cakes and pies by the slice as well as cookies and cupcakes.

Stendahl got her start last year as a vendor at the Bellingham Farmers Market. While selling her baked goods at the market she got to know Wes Herman, CEO of Woods Coffee. Herman’s wife, Diane, fell in love with Stendahl’s southern carrot cake. As the Hermans became regular customers, they learned Stendahl was looking for a way to open a small storefront. It came at a time when the Hermans were looking to add a tenant inside its large Flatiron building cafe.

“We were really impressed,” Wes Herman said, noting the balance of flavors in her baked goods are excellent. “We went back each week and realized she was a young entrepreneur making a good product.”

Since Woods Coffee has its own line of baked goods, it may seem like unusual to add a bakery stand inside the cafe. Wes Herman said it’s turned out to be a good fit because Stendahl offers a different variety of baked goods they that Woods didn’t have time to do.

Stendahl said that also works well for her, because she can focus on her baking without having to add coffee to her menu. Adding drinks to the menu would probably be a requirement if she had a standalone bakery shop.

She’s also opening up a new opportunity for Woods Coffee. Antler is open in the afternoon into the evening, catching more the date night crowd or those looking for dessert. She’s able to prepare her product in the morning, ensuring the baked goods are fresh in the afternoon and evening. While she’s only been open a few months, Stendahl said she’s pleased with the response.

“I’ve had great feedback from customers, which makes me so happy,” Stendahl said.

Stendahl said she loves the look of antlers, so much so that she incorporated into the business name.

Antler is currently open 2-8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Stendahl will also be back at the Farmers Market this season. Details about the company can be found on Facebook or Instagram.

TERRA MAKING SOME CHANGES

Terra, the natural foods grocery store in the Bellingham Public Market at 1530 Cornwall Ave., recently announced on its Facebook page several big changes.

The store is making plans to shrink its retail floor and lease the extra space to new tenants. Owner Stephen Trinkaus said the store size is too big and inefficient for current market conditions, adding there are some local businesses already considering the new space but won’t make an official announcement until after the leases are signed. Around 2,000 square feet is available for lease.

Along with shrinking the store space, Trinkaus said he is putting in a new sales system, something that should happen in the next month.

In the meantime, the store is having a clearance sale to clear out some inventory. Trinkaus said they are also working on plans to start a home delivery service of local products.

Triticale bottle
A bottle of Triticale beer, which won the bronze medal last month at the New York International Beer Competition. Atwood Ales Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

OTHER TIDBITS

A state liquor license application was submitted to put in a new restaurant at 7471 Mount Baker Hwy., in the former Mouth Hole space in Maple Falls. The proposed name is Yuki Yama and the applicants are Robert Hopson and Akane Matsumaru. ... Peter James Studios has submitted building permits to go into the second floor of the new Orca building at 1211 Mill Ave. in Fairhaven. ... Brotha Dudes restaurant has submitted applications to do some renovation work at 3098 Northwest Ave., in the former La Patisserie space near Yeager’s Sporting Goods. .... According to The Northern Light newspaper in Blaine, Starbucks has signed a lease to occupy space in a new building under construction at 568 Peace Portal Drive in Blaine, near the Chevron gas station. Developer Mike Hill said the Starbucks location will have a drive-thru and about 2,650 square feet of space. ... The Bellingham home boutique store Helene & Co. announced on its Facebook page that it is moving from 1303 Astor St. to Barkley Village. The store is having a clearance sale through the end of March and plans to open in its new location at the beginning of June. Details about the company can be found on its website. ... Atwood Ales, the farm brewery in Blaine, recently won the bronze medal at the New York International Beer Competition. The medal was for the Atwood’s Triticale beer, which is made from a wheat-rye hybrid grain.

All of the triticale, wheat and barley used by Atwood was grown and malted by Skagit Valley Malting. Triticale was one of more than 600 submissions from 14 different countries at the event.

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