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Every Day Is An Adventure At The Inkwell Bakery

"If you make me an egg, I am definitely going to be critical of you. I am not the person who is gonna build up your ego." Tracy Gates on her drive to improve.

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    Tracy Gates fell in love with the space where Inkwell found its home. She says there is nothing about it she would change, it works perfectly.

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The name Inkwell isn't loaded with meaning for Gates, but it fits with what she has in mind for a community space.

  • Tracy-kitchen

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The kitchen too, follows the model of simplicity. It's where Gates and Master Cook Shawn Blankenship hold their "egg clinics. "

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The bakery is located in the basement. It's an efficient set-up, with minimal equipment. Everything you need, nothing extra.

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The Inkwell offers Gates' signature poptarts, plus the cookies, muffins and scones that fans of her first business, the Red Chair Bakery, may have been craving for years.

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The menu is simple and has been built gradually starting with coffee the first week. While she plans to add a few items, it won't get more complicated.

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    Photo: Courtesy of The Inkwell

    Sunlight on a fruit tart, fresh from the oven.

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    Photo: Courtesy of The Inkwell

    Gates has been making these cookies most of her life, but she still weighs every ingredient.

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    Photo: Courtesy of The Inkwell

    The Inkwell's fresh baked scones are melt-in-your-mouth, lighter than air.

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    Photo: Kayte Young/WFIU

    The long bar carries your eye through the deep, narrow room, and ties it all together. Gates sources her coffee from local roaster, Hopscotch Coffee.

On today’s show we talk with Tracy Gates about what motivates her as a new business owner. Her new cafe, The Inkwell opened in Bloomington Indiana this fall.

“I like to have an adventure everyday”

That’s part of what inspires Tracy Gates to go for a daily run, and also what excites her about owning her own restaurant.

Our interview with Gates is the second installment in our series Making the Leap,  where we ask the owners of new food businesses, “What does it take to start something like this?”

Gates talks about her desire to keep things simple and her constant drive towards excellence.

Chef daniel Orr treats us to a warming, spiced winter beverage and Harvest Public Media has a report on potential threats to the grass fed beef market.

Taylor Killough has a report on a few farm worker’s rights issues that have popped up in the news in recent weeks, including a new app to warn workers of dangerous heat conditions in the field.



Stories On This Episode

App, Protests, And Farmworker Rights


From new technology to classic picket line protests, farmworker rights issues have been prominent in the news in recent weeks.

Sage Advice, AKA: Warm Apple Cider With Sage And Spices


Clove studded oranges make any room smell delicious. They also lend intense flavors to this wintertime beverage.

Grass-Fed Beef May Run Into Roadblock: Less Nutritious Grass


It may be just a matter of time before prairie grasses simply don’t have enough protein to support grazing. Are rising CO2 levels to blame?

Kayte Young

Kayte Young discovered her passion for growing, cooking, foraging and preserving fresh food when she moved to Bloomington in 2007. With a background in construction, architecture, nutrition education and writing, she brings curiosity and a love of storytelling to a show about all things edible. Kayte raises bees, a small family and a yard full of food in Bloomington’s McDoel Gardens neighborhood.

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