Vines Bakery: Scones, and Pies, and Cakes...Oh My!
Another new small business is opening in Ashland and you’ll never guess what it is. I’ll give you a hint: scones, pies, cakes, cookies, muffins...It’s Vines Bakery!
I had a chance to sit down with owner Julianna Hritz and talk with her about the exciting news.
What’s your story?
Originally from Pittsburgh, Julianna graduated from Ashland University in 2016 with a degree in Family and Consumer Science Education. After four years she decided to take a different path.
“I had always grown up saying that I wanted to be a pastry chef or bake in some way. But I had given that up for a much more practical-seeming “adult” job. So after I decided not to teach, I honestly had no plan B, I had no clue what else I wanted to pursue.”
How did your business get started?
“Vines started at the farmer’s market as just a home bakery on Saturday mornings. And then I started taking special orders. And I expanded to provide scones for Downtown Perk, they were nice enough to allow that, which was very exciting. But then I had the opportunity to use this storefront. Some incredible people were just placed in my life at the exact right times to encourage me and move everything forward. And this building just feels like a gift, like this whole experience and journey. I’m so excited to try it out and pursue this childhood dream that I had previously let go for so long and then it just came back to me.”
What is your goal for Vines Bakery?
“The dream for me is to have it be as much a bakery as it is a gathering place. The dream for me is to be a coffee shop environment while still being a bakery. We’ll still be doing more simple pastries like scones, muffins, cookies, cakes, pies, french macarons, things like that. As well as serving pour-over coffee, loose-leaf tea, hopefully some hot chocolate and a couple other beverages, too.”
“I wanted it to be a place where students can come and hang out and do homework. Or young moms with kids can swing over and get a cookie. Or people around town can just come up and set up shop with their laptop can get some work done. I’m doing it as much for the environment and the people as it is for just selling pastries and all that. And I’ll still be doing special orders as well.”
Why is it beneficial to Ashland?
“I just feel like so often I would catch myself leaving town to go find an environment like this. I would go to Medina or Wooster or Mansfield to get the kind of atmosphere and the kind of product that I was looking for. So I think it’s kind of exciting to maybe bring some of that feel of bigger cities to our Ashland so we don’t have to leave to get something like this. And it’s been so fun to see all of these new businesses start popping up around town, even from the six years I’ve been here, from the time when I was a student. So I think it’s an exciting thing to have something new and to have more options in town. My dream is to live in an abundance mindset, to feel like there’s enough. Where there’s enough time and energy and resources and people in this area for all of us to be successful and it’s just going to make Ashland an even better place.”
What should people know?
“People should know that we are a small-batch, handmade, artisan operation. So a lot of the things you might expect in a more commercial bakery, we won’t always have or be able to do. We’ll be different. Sometimes we’ll have limited quantities or different flavors and hopefully we’ll have a seasonal menu. We’re going to try our hardest to connect with other small businesses, like local coffee roasters, Ohio tea providers, and dairy farms. My biggest fear is that people will expect us to crank out like 400 cupcakes in a day. I guess people should know that we’re our own thing and just to know that this is a small operation that we’re hoping to grow.”
When will it open?
“It’s hard to say when we will officially open. We move forward every day, but there are still some licensure things and more logistics that we’re waiting on. We’re extremely hopeful that we’ll be open this coming winter, as soon as possible.
When the bakery opens, it will be located at 530 College Avenue, Ashland. For more information, you can follow Vines Bakery on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/vinesbakery/