This fall, patrons of gluten-free goodie shop Bake Me Happy will have a place to stick around and enjoy their treats with the perfect pairing: a cup of coffee.
The bakery, which has quickly become a Merion Village staple since its opening in September of 2014, is expanding and adding a coffee shop in the space next door as former neighbors T.Y. Fine Furniture headed for Clintonville.
“I think this was a natural progression in our business plan,” says Co-Owner Letha Pugh, who runs the bakery with her wife, Wendy. “The demand was more than what we were providing for customers.”
The current Merion Village space serves double duty as Bake Me Happy’s production facility to fulfill wholesale orders and retail store front with a limited run of hours Wednesday through Saturday. As each segment of the business took off in its own right, Pugh says things were getting to the point where there needed to be some separation, and a coffee shop seemed like a natural extension to tie it all together.
The retail side of the bakery will move over to the coffee shop where visitors will find familiar favorites, as well as some ventures into savory items. A rotating list of vendors will supply the coffee, with Bake Me Happy getting beans from micro-roasters to many of the coffee mainstays in the Columbus community.
“The roasters have been awesome supporters,” Pugh says.
As a first-time coffee shop owner, Pugh has been facing a learning curve, but says local roasters have been a great source of education. She’s been making the rounds taking classes with Brioso, Crimson Cup and Stauf’s. As the owner, she feels the responsibility to know how to do everything – from managing the space to making a latte.
Pugh says to expect a colorful, eclectic 2,000 square feet on the coffee shop side. There will be WiFi and plenty of outlets, but “I also am excited about allowing the community to utilize the space,” Pugh says. The coffee shop will allow for meetings and events at Bake Me Happy.
Originally finding their bakery on Craig’s List, the owners have fallen in love with the Merion Village area.
“We just got a really good neighborhood vibe, people would stop by and check on us,” Pugh says.
She’s excited to establish a neighborhood coffee shop in a part of town that doesn’t have many.
“It’s been a great marriage and I would like to do more in Merion Village,” she says.
Bake Me Happy’s coffee shop will bring some additional jobs to the area. Pugh expects they will add about six or seven positions from bakers to baristas.
At its estimated fall opening, Bake Me Happy will also expand their retail hours, being open Wednesday through Sunday, 7 a.m. – 6.p.m.
For more information, visit bakemehappygf.com.
CLICK HERE to visit Columbus Underground for more details on Bake Me Happy’s new venture.