The Mixx hires Amy Rathbone to return as its baker

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When Jo Marie Scaglia — proprietor of the metro’s three Mixx restaurants — opened her most recent operation, earlier this year, in Hawthorne Plaza (at 11942 Roe in Overland Park), she installed a bakery kitchen in a corner of the new facility.

“And then I realized that I was going to need to hire a full-time baker,” Scaglia says. “The reason to even have a commissary bakery was to stop outsourcing our sweets and do everything in-house. I immediately thought of one person.”

That person, Amy Rathbone, started her culinary career with Scaglia in 2006, when the first Mixx opened at 4855 Main, just south of  the Country Club Plaza. She baked the first desserts — mostly cookies and cupcakes — for the fast-casual restaurant. “I alternated with Jo Marie’s Aunt Mary,” Rathbone says. “But we were both freelance bakers in those days.”

In those days, that meant Rathbone worked about 20 hours a week.

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Eventually, Rathbone went out on her own, selling her sweets to the Roasterie, Russell Stover and Foo’s Frozen Custard. And then she felt burned out.

“If I couldn’t take my company to the next level,” Rathbone says, “I was done with it.”

So she changed careers completely and went to work for her husband, who oversees a local trade association. That’s when Scaglia called.

“This time it was as office manager and bookkeeper,” Rathbone says. “And it was about this time that the deal to take over the Hawthorne Plaza location was coming together. Jo Marie said to me, ‘If you come back as a baker, you’ll have your own kitchen.’ I was sold.”

The Omaha native knew that the volume of cookies, cupcakes and breakfast pastries at the Mixx had quadrupled since her half-time days, not least because Scaglia does a big catering business and now offers breakfast items at the Overland Park store. So now, Rathbone arrives at the commissary kitchen in Hawthorne Plaza each day at 7:30 a.m. and works until 4 p.m. 

“We now supply all three Mixx locations with baked goods from this kitchen,” Rathbone says. “Cookies, lemon-poppyseed bread, pumpkin bread, fresh blueberry muffins, granola bars, and a chocolate-chip breakfast cake.”

Scaglia says having a busy commissary kitchen is particularly important now because she’s scouting potential locations for a fourth Mixx, this time outside the Kansas City metro.

“We do a very strong dessert business,” Scaglia says. “I need to keep the momentum going.”

Categories: Dining, Food & Drink