Hi! My name is Charlie Dunmire and I am the owner of Deep Sea Sugar & Salt, a cake company in Seattle, Wa.
I started baking 13 years ago at The Edmonds Bakery. In the first half of my career I proofed croissants, scooped muffins, piped eclairs, plated fancy desserts and fried donuts. And then, I found cakes.
For me, cake is the perfect combination of food, art and design. The structure of a cake recipe and the wild freedom that comes with matching flavors and decorating, it's the perfect fit. I instantly fell in love.
I worked as a cake decorator for a couple of years, honing my skills and developing recipes. Then spent a few summers in Alaska cooking on a ship (and testing cake recipes on the crew). In the winter, I picked up work as a contracted pastry chef. Scooting around to different kitchens in South Seattle, I would bake what they could call "in house" desserts. I worked three seasons in Alaska and absolutely loved it. That's where the name Deep Sea Sugar & Salt comes from! Anyway, I came home. Word got around that I was in Seattle for good and the special orders started coming in from friends and family. Then friends of friends. About a year and a half ago I was making so many cakes that I had to cut my hours at my "real job." Only weeks later, I received an email from The Georgetown Trailer Park Mall asking was I interested in opening a cake shop in the park? Yes? I think so? Should I? I did! Friends and I started renovating the old Airstream, I quit my job and jumped in!
The Airstream Cake Shop opened November 5th 2016 selling cake by the slice and cupcakes every Saturday and Sunday. So exciting! Star Brass Lounge graciously lends me their kitchen for baking, and walk in beer cooler for storage. I wash all my dishes there in the mornings. The set up is ideal for a small, weekend market business, but Deep Sea Sugar & Salt is no longer a small weekend business.
Originally I thought: Cool, if I can manage just 5-7 cakes a week, I can get by. In 10 months time I am now producing an average of 40 cakes a week. Oh DANG!
So I'm baking away, watching my little trailer cake shop grow, in the meantime I move into a new house, directly behind the Carleton Market. Shortly after, I learn that they are looking for someone to take over the space. How fantastic is that?! I couldn't say no.
And here we are. About to open a cake shop in the Carleton Market!
Our new shop will include: Cakes by the slice, cupcakes, whole cakes on hand, coffee, beer & wine, fresh flowers and a small selection of essential grocery items. (This is the only grocery store in the neighborhood. As a key component of the community, I will be sure to continue to provide those every day essentials. Such as: Milk, butter, sugar, flour, laundry soap, toiletries etc.)
Deep Sea Sugar & Salt is currently booked for special order cakes two months out. With this new space, we will have the capacity to bake many more cakes for all of your special occasions, wholesale to local restaurants and coffee shops, and provide cakes on hand for you to grab last minute.
The new Deep Sea Sugar & Salt cake shop will also provide a new social center for the neighborhood. A beautiful bakery right in the middle of all the action. A place to meet your neighbors, enjoy a slice of cake, relax after work and grab a beer. Bring the kiddos in for a cupcake treat or pack a special flavor box to take home for after dinner. There will be something for everyone to enjoy.
How will I use the kickstarter funds?
Currently, the Carleton Market is a grocery store with a small residential kitchen in the back. The money raised through Kickstarter will fund:
- A full kitchen remodel
- Equipment such as ovens, mixers, a dishwasher, butcher block tables
- All permits required by the city of Seattle
-Tables, seating and shelving
-Grocery and ingredient inventory
- A start on our monthly rent and utilities
Check out some of our awesome rewards!
Risks and challenges
This project is so exciting and completely terrifying! For the last year I have been troubleshooting and succeeding at the Airstream Cake Shop. Making cakes in larger and larger quantities. Learning the ins and outs of being a small business owner and preparing myself for something bigger. Well, this is it! With 13 years experience in baking and restaurants, a strong customer base and all the passion and drive, I'm ready to take on the next big step.
There will be plenty of bumps in the road and I still have a great deal to learn. To help me with these bumps I have pulled together a fantastic team of folks, each of which brings important skills to the table. Long time small business owners, lawyers, pastry chefs, restaurant owners, contractors, and architects are all available to answer any questions I'll have along the way. We are prepared and in it for the long haul!
I am so excited to build this bakery! Thank you all for the support and for taking the time to check out my Kickstarter!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)