Sister Pie, A Detroit Bakery, Wins $50,000 in Hatch Contest For Startups

August 20, 2014, 9:50 PM

The fourth annual Hatch Detroit contest winner, announced Wednesday night is Sister Pie, a two-year-old bakery preparing to open its first store next spring.

Owmer Lisa Ludwinski gets $50,000 from Comerica bank, the lead sponsor, plus professional services that include IT support, legal advice, advertising help and accounting work.

Although it has space on Woodward in Midtown, Sister Pie now sells pies, cookies, breads and breakfast pastries only online and at three retailers:

  • Parker Street Market, 1814 Parker St., in the West Village neighborhood.
  • Germack Coffee Roasting Company, Eastern Market.
  • Socra Tea, Midtown.

Lisa Ludwinski plans to use her award to set up a 900-square-foot West Village retail shop. (Facebook photo)

It also has had pop-up booths during local events.   

The bakery was chosen at Ford Field by a panel of judges after presentation by four finalists at an event emceed by former WDET host Craig Fahle. The runners-up are Cockadoodle, a breakfast and lunch restaurant planned for Livernois Avenue; Gabriel Hall, a planned entertainment bar and restaurant in the Woodbridge neighborhood; and Third Wave Music, an instrument shop offering lessons and repairs.

Ludwinski, who has one employee (Anji Reynolds), told judges that her business name comes from an affectionate phrase she and her sister use for each other, Victoria Trudeau reports at Eater Detroit. The baker's food experience includes an online cooking show, "Sunny Side Up," taped at her Brooklyn apartment. Trudeau live-blogged from the stadium. Ludwinski went on to apprentice under two New York restaurant pastry chefs.

"She recently revealed her plans to Eater Detroit to open a new brick and mortar store adjacent to the market," according to Trudeau.

The final four contenders emerged from among 10 semi-finalists after a week of public voting this month.

Here's how Sister Pie defines its mission at the shop's Facebook page:

We aim to celebrate the seasons through pie; to provide consistently delicious, thoughtful, and inventive food; to foster a welcoming environment for employees and customers through transparency, community engagement, and education.

Sister Pie items are sold at Parker Street Market in the West Village

The bakery's menu, which changes monthly, is here.

These are the 2014 contest judges:  

  • Lydia Gutierrez, Hacienda Mexican Foods
  • Jackie Victor, Avalon Breads
  • Kirk Mayes of Forgotten Harvest
  • Hugh Yaro of Craftwork

-- Alan Stamm

Read more:  Hatch Detroit

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