On a recent trip to Louisville, my husband and I were on a quest to find all the greatest murals around town in between meals. I scoured Instagram and took note of all the locations of some great murals and we got to driving. We headed south into the Shelby Park neighborhood and found an incredible elaborate mural on the side of a brick building and as we parked our car, we found this building was a bakery! Still full from our barbecue lunch, we stepped inside the pristine white storefront of Scarlet’s Bakery.
If there’s one thing I always have room for, its baked goods. Lining their clean white counter were plates of gorgeous sweets that begged us to buy every one and upon seeing the prices, we couldn’t resist. In this day and age where a cupcake can put you out $4, we were a bit in awe that most items were selling for around a dollar! We snagged up a few salted chocolate cookies and peanut butter brownies and took a seat at the counter.
As we dug into our treats, we gave each other satisfied “THIS IS SO GOOD” smiles. The perfectly salted cookies were chewy with just the right amount of crisp. Josh devoured his peanut butter brownie, claiming it to be the best peanut butter frosting he has ever had. We turned back towards the baked goods, wondering if we should go purchase more for the road. But with full stomachs, we decided we’d just have to come back again and try their well-loved cinnamon rolls and cupcakes.
As a regular instagrammer of food, I must mention that Scarlet’s Bakery is a food photography paradise as the giant windows let in so much light onto the clean white surfaces. Not to mention, there are great interior design touches everywhere like succulents hanging on the wall.
As I explored the quiet shop and took pictures, I began talking with the manager who had quite the story to tell about Scarlet’s Bakery. They are a nonprofit organization that hires women from the sex trafficking and adult entertainment industries and gives them valuable training for work in the food industry. Volunteers regularly come in to do the dirty work like dishes and cleaning, so the employees can focus on their training and skilled work and the bakery can keep costs low.
The bakery stems from the nonprofit Scarlet Hope that has spent the last seven years helping women get out of the adult entertainment industry. But as these women searched for new jobs, they couldn’t find alternatives so founder Rachelle Star went back to her baking roots and combined her two passions to start Scarlet’s Bakery. Now these women have a safe place to learn new skills with a kind and talented staff.
The staff welcomed me into the back where I got to know the head baker who was preparing for a catering event. Scarlet’s Hope had been catering for many different events and businesses in the years before the bakery opened and now customers can enjoy treats a la carte and Scarlet’s Hope has a full kitchen to prepare for catering events.
After opening in September of last year, Scarlet’s Bakery has been a light in the up and coming neighborhood of Shelby Park and a great place for locals to meet for treats and coffee. Their delicious pastries alone make one want to come back again and again, but their mission to help women in need is absolutely inspiring. If you ever make a trip to Louisville, stop in at Scarlet’s Bakery and get to know their wonderful staff over a cup of coffee and cinnamon rolls. Then run outside to the amazing mural and snap a few pictures. Just make sure to post the experience on Instagram and spread the word about Scarlet’s Bakery!
I’m obsessed with ice cream and spend my days studying, experimenting, churning, and taste-testing my own concoctions. I’m well practiced at spending hours in the car singing to Journey and munching on salt & vinegar chips while roadtripping to beaches, cities, and great eateries. When I’m not eating food or making ice cream, I read books, work on my subpar photography skills, and explore my current home of Indiana with my husband and best friend, Josh.