The Rapidian

Sweetie-licious expands pie passion to East Grand Rapids location

Linda Hundt, owner of Sweetie-licious Bakery Cafe, is opening a third location in Gaslight Village in East Grand Rapids, joining Mary Ann's Chocolates.
Linda Hundt is the owner of Sweetie-licious.

Linda Hundt is the owner of Sweetie-licious. /Courtesy of Sweetie-licious

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Locations

Grand Rapids Downtown Market

435 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503

 

Sweetie-licious Bakery Cafe

108 North Bridge Street DeWitt, MI 48820

 

New Location:

2226 Wealthy St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506

Sweetie-licious DeWitt location

Sweetie-licious DeWitt location /Courtesy of Sweetie-licious

/Courtesy of Sweetie-licious

“I connected baking and love at an early age,” says Linda Hundt, owner of Sweetie-licious. Sweetie-licious will be opening its third location in East Grand Rapids. The bakery café will be taking over Mary Ann’s Chocolates in the Gaslight Village (2226 Wealthy St SE).

Hundt has received national and regional recognition for her pies. She has won numerous challenges and awards, including the Food Network 2009 Amazing Pie Challenge. She has appeared on the Today show and in magazines such as Food & Wine and Country LivingHer cookbook "Sweetie-licious Pies: Eat Pie, Love Life" received the Michigan Notable Book Award this year. Currently she is working on another cookbook.

“Pie is pretty special and not everyone can bake a really good pie. I wanted to make sure that the legacy continued that people could buy great pie, like what your mom and grandma made. I knew that I was the person that needed to do that,” says Hundt.

When Linda Hundt was a kid, she says her favorite toy was her Easy Bake Oven. She would bake cakes and pies for her brothers. She says that was when she first knew her brothers liked her.

She has fond memories of baking pies with her mom and grandma. Many of Hundt’s pies are based on her family’s recipes. Hundt also has a large collection of vintage cookbooks that she uses to create her pies. Hundt is self-taught. Her recipes are based off experimenting and practicing with a variety of ingredients and recipes.

“Walking into the shop is all about going back in time. It’s all about the experience, from the smells of the shop, to the retro music and retro furniture. It is really the taste of what your mom and grandma made,” Hundt says.

The most popular pies at Sweetie-licious are made with seasonal ingredients. In the summer, strawberry rhubarb pies and Michigan cherry pies are a favorite. Hundt says the best part about Michigan is all of the seasons and local fruit available.

“I never get tired of making pies. I do get tired in general, but not of making pies,” says Hundt with a laugh.

Sweetie-licious has grown from Hundt’s back porch, to opening a café in DeWitt, to having a space in the Grand Rapids Downtown Market and now onto the opening of the East Grand Rapids location.

“There’s a lot of expansion that we’re doing but it’s only for the good of pie,” says Hundt.

Recently Sweetie-licious received a deal with Williams-Sonoma to make all of the pies for their catalogue and internet sales.

“My mission was always to start off in Michigan and have four or five stores, and then spread pie throughout the whole country,” she says.

The new Sweetie-licious location in East Grand Rapids will still sell Mary Ann’s chocolates and coffee, in addition to their regular assortment of baked good and café sandwiches. This location will have a larger variety of coffee than other Sweetie-licious shops. Hundt estimates that the East Grand Rapids location will open within the month or in August.

“Grand Rapids has always been one of my favorite cities. I’ve always loved it,” Hundt says. She feels that Grand Rapids fits well with Sweetie-licious’ mission and that the people of Grand Rapids know how to appreciate good food.

“It’s an honor to be in the place that we’re in and for people to love who we are. We love them right back,” Hundt says.

Hundt places emphasis on each of their Sweetie-licious locations being unique and different from one another.

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market location has more of an open kitchen concept than their other locations. Hunt explains that the Market is more about the artisan and craftsmanship work. She feels it’s important for customers to go to the market and watch Sweetie-licious pies being made and frosted.

“Each store will have its own personality but the main backbone is the same mission and same feeling- that is, all about the experience of going back to yesteryear,” she says. There is no wifi at the locations, in hopes that people will want to talk together and savor a slice of pie.

Hundt takes pride in the pies that each Sweetie-licious location creates. She says she is overwhelmed by the people in the community that support her business and her dream.

“I love our Michigan and I just love to be able to promote it and promote our amazing food and our amazing people,” she says. “Everyone has always been so wonderful to us and accommodating. I really believe that I would not be where I am today if people didn’t believe in what I was trying to do.”

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