At Happy Chicks Bakery, Jana and Jessica craft sweet pastries and desserts with the mission of bringing joy to their patrons. But the bakers aren't churning out the same old treats: everything they create is vegan. That means the dairy, eggs, and tiny t-bone steaks typically found in baked goods have no place at Happy Chicks. Instead, the specialists rely on fresh seasonal and local ingredients to build a menu that includes cakes, cookies, macarons, pies, and croissants. Their seasonal flavors?which might include orange-blossom apricot cupcakes in the summer or carrot pistachio sheet cakes in the spring?are complemented by intricate design work, such as buttercream roses or fondant foxes.
Students in 60- to 90-minute classes at the Cheesy Gourmet learn how to make bagel-ready spreads, sliceable block cheeses, and crumbly feta using nothing but cheesecloth and a splash of milk. Participants can snack on provided cheese and crackers or sip wine they brought themselves as they watch Cheesy chefs demonstrate techniques inside a quaint kitchen painted robin’s-egg blue. After the class, guests leave with enough cheesecloth to make their own cheeses or dairy-based paper-maché art projects at home.
Founders of Huntergreengrass Edward and Barb ousted meat from their diets more than three decades ago. Their conversion to vegetarianism launched them on a journey to wellness with many pit stops: they opened a health-food store and helmed a vegan catering company, and Edward penned a vegetarian cookbook. But the defining moment of their foray into health and understanding of compound words was when Barb began training under Dr. Ann Wigmore, a pioneer in the wheatgrass movement. As Barb learned about healthy living and the wheatgrass diet and began to adhere to it, she and Edward had their freshest idea yet: Huntergreengrass. Recently named Best Wheatgrass Fix by Cincinnati CityBeat, Huntergreengrass brings to Findlay Market a menu of juices, smoothies, soups, and vegetarian fare more health-focused than a multivitamin wrapped in kale and stuffed in a carrot. The flavorful beverages and noshes hail from Edward and Barb's organic, nutrient-fortified soil, where wheat berries flourish until they ripen to the peak of nutrition and sweetness at 6–10 inches. Then the couple snips all the stalks from one tray and stows them in the refrigerator for up to 10 days. The healthful shots brim with vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and digestion-aiding enzymes. Shots can be swirled into sweet juices of antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies such as carrots, apples, beets, and oranges.