Confituras, Austin’s award-winning boutique jam and preserves company, has big plans for its widely anticipated Little Kitchen.
On Wednesday, the company announced that pastry chef Kendall Melton will join the team at Confituras Little Kitchen, a community kitchen, retail space, and jam and biscuit shop, slated to open in early 2017. Melton, whose resume includes pastry stints at Contigo and Odd Duck, will display her ample knowledge, while showcasing Confituras’ locally and sustainably sourced preserves and seasonal bounty.
Confituras’ owner Stephanie McClenny launched a Kickstarter campaign in the fall of 2015 to fund the community kitchen. The goal of $20,000 was met in just eight days.
"Austin has a very vibrant local food community," says McClenny. "We ended up with almost $30,000 pledged, so we feel that the community is really behind us. We found a building in the South Lamar corridor and plan to begin construction soon, with the completion of the kitchen sometime in early 2017."
Most of the building, located at 2129 Goodrich Ave., will house a community kitchen, which is designed to be shared with other local food businesses. The kitchen, which will operate on a sliding scale based on income and type of use, will also serve as an incubator designed to assist small, up-and-coming women-owned food businesses. McClenny also plans to offer mentorship from chefs, food artisans, and others in the local food community, as well as advice on small business topics, legal services, real estate, and bookkeeping/accounting.
In the front of the building, a retail space and jam and biscuit shop will showcase Confituras' products to the public, and a smaller space will be available to host private and community events.
"We are lining up vendors now," says McClenny of the retail area. "Anyone who is a kitchen partner will be able to use the retail section as their brick-and-mortar [space], so they will be able to retail, regardless of weather issues at the farmers' markets. We will also be showcasing other artisan businesses, such as Little City Coffee and Two Hives Honey."