GREEN BAY – After six years of dreaming, remodeling and (of course) baking, The Bakery is opening on Military Avenue in Green Bay.
The Bakery is exactly what it sounds like, a small shop filled with the warm smell of freshly baked cookies, serving a variety of baked goods to the Green Bay community. Liz Rehberg, the owner and pastry chef, plans to open The Bakery’s doors for regular business hours on Tuesday.
Rehberg has already begun to introduce her business to the community by selling baked goods during the Market on Military farmers market. Rehberg also held an open house on Sept. 17, welcoming customers to see the store and sample her products. The only cost for trying her cookies, danishes, and stuffed croissants was providing feedback.
“(The open house) helped me refine what we were going to do, what people in the area really wanted and what made them excited,” she said.
Rehberg said the shop’s focus is on “Mediterranean flavors made with classic French techniques.” She explained that when she went to culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Chicago she was exposed to flavors not typically found in the Green Bay area.
“As I went to school, I started seeing what is available in Mediterranean (cuisine),” said Rehberg. “There are so many different flavor profiles and so many interesting ways of doing things that are relatively familiar but with cool flavors that maybe you don’t get in the area.”
Rehberg had been rolling around the idea of opening her own bakery even before she graduated in 2012. After school she worked at Monzù Bakery on Broadway, and developed her own recipes on the side. Her parents, Mary and Rich Rehberg, already owned the small storefront where The Bakery is opening.
The first step for opening the shop was renovating the space and moving in all of the correct equipment. Rehberg worked to get the shop in working order and set up the details of the business itself.
After already putting in three years of preparation, Rehberg was getting ready to open in 2017, when she diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis.
“We started working on the building about six years ago and right when we were ready to open I got psoriatic arthritis,” said Rehberg. “It went from, I thought I sprained my ankle to a week later I wasn’t able to walk.”
Rehberg said she gained 20 pounds because of swelling in two weeks; it took her nearly six months just to be able to function. For the last two and a half years, she has been working on finding the right medications to allow her to return to full-time work.
In the meantime, she focused on selling baked goods on a smaller scale. She said that she was able to sell Christmas cookies and bake for a handful of weddings.
The coronavirus pandemic forced her to delay her plan to open The Bakery, but it also gave her time to focus on getting her website up and running. She is looking into ways to offer delivery and hopes that the service will be available to her customers in the next few weeks.
“This is what makes me happy and looking around Green Bay, there’s not really any bakeries left that do traditional or classic baking,” said Rehberg. “I just wanted a place that made stuff I liked, and so far everybody around me has liked it too.”
Alexandria Bursiek Kloehn is a business reporter for the Green Bay Press-Gazette. You can reach her at [email protected] or view her Twitter at @bursiekkloehn
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