Working Iowa: The Eat Shop looks to add more staff to family-like atmosphere

Published: Nov. 13, 2023 at 7:47 AM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Like the smell of cinnamon that fills the store, owning The Eat Shop in Solon is sweet for Cheryl Maloney.

”There’s a little bit of family history in it. My great aunt ran it 85 years ago. She had a shop in Cedar Rapids called Marion’s Eat Shop. And so we’re carrying on her tradition here,” Maloney explained.

The Eat Shop opened in Solon just over 2 years ago and has already expanded to the College of Law building on the University of Iowa campus.

“The pastries here that are made we bring down to our location and Iowa City as well as our partner at Sidekick Coffee & Books in Iowa City,” said Maloney.

The expansion means there’s room for the team to grow as well. The Eat Shop is looking to add to its family-like atmosphere.

”Everybody gets along. We have a lot of laughs. We get to be creative. We make a lot of stuff we give input. It’s just it’s just really fun relaxed flexible schedule with kids or family stuff, which is a really great place to work,” said Sarah Ferin, Bakery Manager at The Eat Shop.

Ferin, a mom of four stayed home full-time before getting hired.

“She took a chance on me and started teaching me how to do everything else like yeast with the rules, and that was cool. But then, you know, if a kid got sick or somebody needed to be early morning practice that’s always been fine,” Ferin explained.

After all family is where The Eat Shop’s traditions are rooted.

“It’s been super cool for me really really neat for my family, especially my mom and her sister because they love baking and learn so much of like their techniques from my great aunt and then pass those on to me. So it’s been, yeah, it’s been a dream. I never knew I wanted, and now I love it, and I’m living my dream,” Maloney said.

It’s a legacy of baking that’s continuing to grow.