THE VALLEY KITCHEN
The Valley Kitchen is a dynamic food centre located on snʕickstx tmxʷúlaʔxʷ (Sinixt territories) in Winlaw, BC. Our facility offers a rental kitchen and event space, food and equipment storage, a Sunday community café and consulting services for commercial kitchen design.
BRINGING LOCAL FOOD BUSINESSES AND COMMUNITY TOGETHER
A bright, spacious, well-equipped commercial kitchen available for rent by the hour.
Book a tour today!
A weekly café open every Sunday 9am-3pm, featuring artisan products made by local food businesses in our commercial kitchen.
An online store featuring products made by local businesses in our kitchen. Order online and pick up the following Sunday during café hours.
Need help designing, building or renovating your own commercial kitchen?
Get in touch to find how we can support you.
The Valley Kitchen Sunday Café is closed for a winter break, due to reopen in February 2021.
We serve No.6 coffee (roasted in Nelson, BC) and a selection of treats made by local food businesses in our rental kitchen.
Our menu includes artisan pastry, organic sausage rolls, faery cakes (V, GF), spinach/feta pockets, fresh cookies, sourdough pizzas, salted caramel sticky buns, sourdough focaccia, sourdough bread.
We sell out fast so feel free to place your order online from Monday to Friday, and we'll have your treats waiting for you this Sunday!
Meet Mike Atsalakis, maker of artisan pastry and baked goods.
IMPORTANT! Saturday is Mike’s final pop-up at Au Soleil Levant in Nelson before the break. This week is also The Valley Kitchen’s final Sunday café. You can find Mike’s pastry in both places!
We’re endlessly grateful that Mike bases his business out here (in the sticks!) when his pastry rivals anything you’ll find in artisan big city bakeries. His croissants are airy, flakey and semi-sourdough. Sometimes he’ll rock out a batch of full sourdough croissants, or sourdough wholewheat croissants, just because he can! If you are familiar with laminated pastry and sourdough, you’ll appreciate how tricky this is. But that’s Mike – always pushing the limits, and we reap the benefits!
Mike Atsalakis, Baker
Mike began to develop his appreciation for food back in his early childhood in Greece. His grandmother’s epic home-cooking had his friends lingering at his house, waiting for mealtime. He remembers being sent down to the neighbourhood bakery to buy bread and marvelling at the rustic loaves and mountains of cookies and desserts, all sold by weight.
That changed when Mike moved to Canada in his early teens. He adapted to North American culture where, at the time, food didn’t hold as central of a role in the home and community as it had for him in Greece. It wasn’t until years later, as an adult, while attending the cooking program at Selkirk College that his passion for food was reignited.
As part of that program, Mike learned the fundamentals of baking. After completing school, he worked on cooking lines in various restaurants and kitchens over the next few years. All the while, at home, he’d made a sourdough starter and was experimenting with sourdough bread and laminated pastry. The practice of baking was calming and meditative for Mike, a stark contrast to the stress of working in a busy restaurant kitchen. Though he valued the experience he gained working on ‘the line’, the time eventually came to take the leap and follow his passion.
In 2014, he began rolling croissants out by hand and selling them at the Cottonwood Market in Nelson every Saturday. Mike loved the market scene from the get-go. Connecting with community over food was, and continues to be, a hugely fulfilling aspect of his business venture. And the people just LOVED his croissants! He quickly developed a loyal following; one needed to get in line early to get a treat because he’d often sell out before noon.
When we opened The Valley Kitchen in 2017, Mike was among our very first renters. Since then, he has scaled up production and services a slew of wholesale clients (including us). He holds a pop-up bakery every Saturday at Au Soleil Levant @ausoleillevant in Nelson. Again, go early because he sells out fast!
When we asked Mike what keeps him inspired, he told us it was his love of people and his love of food. Eating good food and feeling deeply connected to community – what else do you need? Mike bakes the things he loves to eat, and you can taste that in his products. From the spanakopita to the croissants, from the baklava to the brownies and cookies, everything is made with skill and lots of love.
One day Mike hopes to live above his own little shopfront. Until then, we cherish having him as part of our kitchen community here in Winlaw.
If you'd like to get in touch with Mike, hit him up on Instagram: @luvafairpastry