WASILLA, Alaska (KTUU) — A quaint bakery restaurant nestled off the Palmer-Wasilla Highway has been serving local, organic, and gluten-free fare to its customers for 15 years. About a month ago, Bistro Red Beet owner Sally Koppenberg took to social media to announce that Saturday April 2 would be their last day.
“We would have liked to sell it so it could continue to provide the community with the things it has clearly embraced,” Koppenberg said.
The bakery owner said a number of people had expressed interest in potentially buying the business, but after a while it became clear they were going to have to close – instead of sell – to commit to reaching their goal of retiring in the spring of 2022. Koppenberg will be the first to admit that owning a successful business with a weekly changing menu is a lot of work, so it was no surprise that she didn’t. could not find a new owner.
“My husband and I just aren’t that young anymore,” Koppenberg laughed. “…Working in the restaurant business is really a game for young people. It really is.”
Since the announcement, the restaurant’s loyal customers have turned out in droves to support the business and bid farewell. Some, Koppenberg said, come almost every day.
“It’s been very hectic,” admitted Koppenberg. “They send us off with a big big bang and they wear us out, so they did their job. We will leave tired.
Koppenberg and her husband don’t yet know exactly how they will spend their retirement, but there are no plans to leave the community. She said they would continue to work in the food industry to some extent, including plans to publish her own line of cookbooks.
“It’s one of my big long-term projects that I’ll be working on,” Koppenberg said. “And then we’ll hang out locally with food, do something.”
Koppenberg seemed at peace that Saturday will be their last day of operation as a business. When asked what she was most proud of over the past 15 years, she said community.
“People in this community growing and producing food, regardless of what’s swirling around them,” Koppenberg said. “I’m so grateful to them.”
According to Koppenberg, all Bistro Red Beet did was showcase what local farmers grew for the community, and hearing that community come to life and interact with each other under its roof was one of the most rewarding parts. of his possession.
Koppenberg said she and her husband are grateful for their clients’ support over the years, but are happy with their decision to move forward.
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