Bagel Company Gets OK to Operate From Home

The Sturgeon Bay Planning Committee granted a conditional use permit (CUP) to Patrick and Alexandra Cole that will allow them to continue their retail sale of baked goods – bagels, specifically – from their home at 364 S. Duluth Ave., on the corner of West Spruce Drive.  

The Coles’ new business, Door County Bagel Company, is allowed to produce baked goods and sell them directly to consumers from their home kitchen under Wisconsin’s Cottage Law, but Sturgeon Bay zoning requires a CUP to operate onsite retail sales of baked goods within a residential district.

Patrick Cole, who addressed the committee during last week’s public hearing, said they wouldn’t need a commercial kitchen unless their business took off and achieved more than $25,000 annually in sales – an amount he said they are currently well below. 

Customers use the Coles’ driveway and front door to pick up orders. During last week’s public hearing, committee members asked about customer traffic, and a neighbor called in some concerns about the potential for traffic and public-health issues, given that the business wouldn’t require public-health inspections. 

But the Planning Committee and staff members, who recommended approval, were satisfied with the Coles’ operation and the fact that their home is located on an already-busy collector road. They also thought the home business was a good way to test a new idea without a lot of expense and upfront commitment.

“I think this is an interesting project, and I think it’s a good way to start,” said Sturgeon Bay Mayor David Ward in his capacity as chair of the Planning Committee.