The first bite transports you to a warm, Mississippi morning. The array of spices paired with a hint of pineapple give a burst of flavor, but the carrots and walnuts provide a smooth finish. Top that all off with cream cheese frosting and a buttermilk glaze, and you’ll find yourself licking the plate clean.
This southern carrot cake is a staple of the new Antler Baking Company, located downtown within Woods Coffee in the Bellingham Flatiron Building.
Owner Veronica Stendahl loves the cake so much, she served it at her own wedding. She recalled baking and decorating her two-tiered cake beforehand. You would think that, for a bride, preparing her own cake would be more stress, but Stendahl said she couldn’t have imagined having it any other way.
“Everyone kept telling me I was crazy,” she said with a laugh. “But it was the best decision ever. It’s my favorite dessert.”
Now Stendahl is sharing her signature cake, among other cakes, pies, cookies, and treats with the Bellingham community. She started selling her goodies at the local farmers market in July 2017, where she met Wes Herman, CEO of Woods Coffee. He and his wife took a liking to both her desserts and her entrepreneurial spirit.
“When I find an entrepreneur with drive and determination, I am all in,” Herman said. “We are proud to stand with Veronica as she has grabbed the horns of Antler to serve up her passion.” Herman set aside a space for Stendahl in the downtown Woods Coffee in December 2017, so patrons could enjoy a cup of Woods coffee and a piece of Antler pie under one roof.
Antler’s spring menu uses seasonal ingredients from farmers market vendors and a dash of liquor in almost every dish. “My bartender side comes out in all of my recipes—I put booze into everything,” Stendahl said. A delicious example of this is the blackberry tequila puree tucked between layers of fresh lemon cake coated with vanilla bean buttercream.
She makes everything from scratch and in small batches, uses local ingredients, and always has at least one glutenfree dessert available. You can pick up Antler’s desserts at Bellingham’s Saturday market, through custom orders, and at the storefront.
Stendahl said she is still in awe of how her small business has come together. “It’s literally like a dream,” she said.
10 Prospect St., Bellingham