What’s your specialty?
We are a bakery specializing in homemade pies and American-style pastries. We bake everything from scratch, right here at our shop in Oak Park — and we strive to use local and seasonal ingredients whenever possible. We love partnering with local farms and purveyors to feature “The Best of the Midwest” in all of our pastries!
When did you open Spilt Milk?
Molly and I started our business in 2014, and initially we baked out of Molly’s apartment kitchen for farmers’ markets, weddings and events. We eventually started renting space at Kitchen Chicago, a commissary kitchen in the West Loop. But we were growing quickly and knew we needed a kitchen of our own and a retail space to continue to keep up with demand. In 2016, we rented a small storefront in Oak Park and opened Spilt Milk Pastry in October 2016. The rest is history!
We are inspired by all sorts of things — but to be honest, most of our recipes are rooted in family tradition. Growing up, our mom and dad were always baking and cooking — and we draw a huge amount of inspiration from our parents and grandparents. Cooking was such a part of our family tradition, as it is for so many folks!
What is the best thing about Spilt Milk?
We love Oak Park and the community of folks that really make this village special. The customers have sustained us through some pretty difficult years as we’ve grown our business and had to pivot in every possible direction over the past few years to keep things humming along. We are proud to be part of the community here and feel so grateful to our customers and the folks who trust us to cook and bake for all their celebrations big and small.
What’s your most popular dish or item? What is your favorite dish?
Our bestsellers are Key Lime Pie and our Savory Breakfast Quiche. Personally, my favorites are always changing … but our selection of butter shortbread cookies is so yummy, I could eat about a million of the rosemary shortbread cookies. I also love our Ham and Gruyere sandwich with homemade pickles and lots of butter.
How did you choose your location on South Blvd.?
We worked with the wonderful Theresa Jurgus from Baird & Warner to help us scout our current location. It was a mad scramble to get our current location open in just 6 weeks from lease signing to opening day. That included doing a full kitchen build-out (with permits!). It truly takes a village — I still marvel at the community effort that went into opening our current shop and am so grateful for the support of our neighbors and friends who helped us along our journey!
How do you differentiate yourself from other bakeries?
Honestly, we don’t worry too much about this. We try to focus on our product and making it the best it can be. I think it’s incredible that Oak Park has so many stellar bakeries in town, and the wider Chicago community is spoiled for excellent pie and pastry shops. It’s an inspiration to be part of the bakery community here. There’s always something delicious to try!
Where do you see Spilt Milk in 5 years?
Hopefully still standing — ha! Molly and I love Spilt Milk, and we hope to be here for many years to come. My daughter Winnie recently told me that when she grows up, she wants to help mommy and Aunt Molly run the bakery. That brought some tears to my eyes. We have worked so hard to build this bakery, and we love our team, we love the community, and we love the food!