HUDSON -- After starting out of Ashley Adkison’s farmhouse, Sweet Beet Bakery has now opened its second location in downtown Hudson.
The business originated as a wholesale bakery, providing baked goods to co-ops and restaurants. While on a delivery to New Richmond, Adkison saw that its bakery was for sale.
“I played around with the idea of actually opening a brick and mortar, and ended up buying it,” Adkison said.
The first Sweet Beet shop opened in New Richmond in 2018. The Hudson shop was originally planned for March of 2020, but opened this year instead.
The shop offers a variety of baked goods made in the New Richmond store, including gluten free and vegan items. The baker works to accommodate all allergen needs, Adkison said.
“Our goal is to make everybody smile whether you’ve got an allergy or not,” she said.
In the future, Adkison plans to open a gathering room and a cake studio where customers can watch a cake artist at work in the Second Street location.
Why did you want to open a new location in Hudson?
My chef can produce more than we can sell in New Richmond. Back in 2020, we definitely recognized that there were no bakeries in downtown Hudson and my business plan idea was to have little satellite locations in different communities but still close enough that I can supply all of them.
Hudson is just so diverse and welcoming. You get a lot of different customers through there from the boating community and a lot of Minnesota visitors, there’s a lot of foot traffic. And everything in Hudson is just so interconnected. Our first big welcome was Chad from Urban Olive, and I love that all the businesses cheer each other on.
How has the opening gone?
The opening has been overwhelming. We definitely had an idea of what it would be like. We surveyed people on our Facebook and kind of kept people up to date and everything. And so we knew there was a lot of excitement, but it definitely exceeded expectations.
What do you hope the new location will add to the Hudson community?
Well, we are hoping that we’re getting diversity in baked goods and getting to try things from different cultures as well. We don't claim to focus on one, like French or Italian or anything like that style baking. We always have a meeting, or at least get together and we come up with different ideas and different cultures that we can highlight.
So we've done Asian, we've done Russian, we've done Scandinavian, you know, anything that challenges my chef and piques an interest. Our diversity of menu items is quite vast.
So we're hoping to bring some excitement to tastebuds, experimenting with different flavors and ideas, and really just pushing the envelope when it comes to flavor and diversity.
What do you enjoy about this business?
I enjoy that it’s a massive creative outlet for both me and my chefs.
We also enjoy the relationships with customers. In New Richmond I’ve watched customers become like best friends of mine. And that's something as a business owner sitting down and making these plans, that was never anything that I thought was possible.
But in New Richmond we have a few customers that have actually volunteered when I’m shorthanded and help out. Sometimes they know leading up to a holiday, I'm working a lot of hours and my staff is working a lot of hours. We’ve had customers drop off homemade meals for us because they know that we're just so busy sometimes we don't eat.
That sense of fellowship and community is huge for us, and I can't wait to see what comes of that in Hudson as well.
Yeah, so the community and fellowship is huge and overwhelming, and like when I get emotional about my business that's one of the big reasons to think that you know, some of our customers take care of us.
What do you want people to know about Sweet Beet?
We are 100% fresh made, meaning that we don't bring anything in that’s frozen and we don't use any mix. A lot of times, we're working out of recipes and cookbooks that come from the early 1900s, the late 1800s. We've got a slew of recipes that come from a great era in baking, which was the 1920s.And a lot of them have been given to us by customers, as like, “This is my grandma's recipe and if you could recreate it, it would be amazing.”
We always take requests, and we always take feedback. A lot of our menu is curated for customers. They challenge us. We currently have a challenge: Somebody asked us to do these Asian melon buns. That is a whole new different style of baking for us because we've never actually seen bread. So we’re testing the waters on that and normally takes about five to 10 trials to master something. And especially with this one it’s using a lot of different skills that we haven't tried out before.