Sarah Mironczuk has baked for Milwaukeeans at restaurants and bakeries for years. Now she’s on her own, with Bakehouse 23.
“Being 40 kind of sent me into an existential crisis, and the pandemic didn’t help,” she said. After working for others for years, “it was time to make the choice to use my skills to build a legacy for my family instead,” Mironczuk said.
With bank loans hard to come by, “we do it in a very convenient way,” Mironczuk said of herself and her husband, Kirk Skorlinski.
They started the business in a ghost kitchen and trading floor, operated by Collective Roots Uptown in Racine at the branch at 1501. It’s an old bank converted to event space at 1501 Washington Ave.
Its baked goods are available at some of the businesses there — Dragon Pit BBQ sells its brownies with its barbecue five days a week; Esperanza Coffee, which sells Guatemalan coffee from the owner’s family farm, sells Bakehouse 23 chocolate chip cookies, for example.
On March 30, Bakehouse 23 products will be available at a night market and dance party hosted by the collective at the Branch at 1501. Called Uptown Throwdown, the night market is ’90s-themed.
Mironczuk made sweets to match the theme: a cosmic brownie with candy-coated chips, an oatmeal cream pie, a no-bake cheesecake that reminds him of the dining room cheesecake, sweets with Fruity Pebbles cereal and clay mugs.
Beverages, including alcoholic Capri Suns, Esperanza and branch will be sold, and vendors will sell clothing and other merchandise. The market is from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Over the next few weeks, Bakehouse 23 will begin to hold regular hours to sell its baked goods on Mondays at the branch (updates will be posted on the bakery’s Facebook and Instagram pages).
The bakery owner also plans to sell her wares at farmers’ markets and fairs this year, through pop-ups at businesses and by supplying restaurants.
Mironczuk doesn’t focus on richly decorated cakes or pastries like croissants; many other bakers, including many of her friends, already supply it to consumers, she said.
Instead, “I’m going to try to stay true to what I love to do, and that’s really satisfying everyone’s inner fat boy,” she said. His ideal treats have “layers of flavors and textures”.
She’s planning items that feel nostalgic, including a “junk food” cookie with potato chips and pretzels and a weekly snack box with treats like bacon caramel corn and caramelized Fritos.
Mironczuk rose to fame 10 years ago when she beat three contestants on the Food Network’s “Sweet Genius” show. She was pastry chef at Harbor House at the time.
Related:Harbor House pastry chef wins competition, $10,000 on ‘Sweet Genius’
She then worked at venues such as Rocket Baby Bakery in Wauwatosa and former Hospitality Democracy (now Benson’s) restaurants downtown, helping launch the Piccino Cafe in Onesto during the pandemic.
It was at Hospitality Democracy restaurants that she met her husband, who was chef for the savory side of the menu.
“My husband and I eventually want to move forward with a brick and mortar,” Mironczuk said, where their skills can be combined — ideally a bar and grill with coffee and charcuterie, she said. .