Bloom Northstreet, a new offshoot of the popular Bloom Bakery on Monroe Street in Madison, opened in the latter half of 2022 and is a welcome addition to the ever-growing options on the northside of Madison. Traditionally a quieter side of town, the northside has seen many new additions in the past year, but Bloom Northstreet is singular in its welcoming spirit and gourmet offerings. It’s also unexpectedly queer.
When you arrive at the space, shared with Cafe Domestique and Youngblood Brewing, you are greeted by a large, brightly colored mural exclaiming “Hey Neighbor.” Entering the building, you are directed to either the right (beer and coffee) or the left (bakery). From there, the large open windows and carefully curated decor make the new Bloom space a more welcoming and less frantic space than their original Monroe Street Location. Here, people casually sit on the vintage chairs or at the large retro table with seating that is reminiscent of days in school. It is a place to unwind, chat to your neighbor, take in the art, and take it easy.
Annemarie Maitri, the owner who just celebrated 15 years of Bloom Bake Shop, said she initially wasn’t looking for a new location, but when she was working the farmers’ market at Edgewood, she reflected on how much she loves the experience of connecting with people. She felt a particular connection to the northside and wanted to explore options for a permanent pop-up type space as a way to bring what was missing from the neighborhood.
Art, Education, and Dialogue—and Pastries
She was invited into the new Northstreet location, and felt it was the perfect opportunity. Bloom would only be responsible for nourishment, not beverage service, and therefore no competition between her and the other businesses moving in. She has since made the space into not only a welcoming place for people looking for quality pastries, but also artists looking to exhibit their work. She isn’t afraid to put a progressive foot forward, with posters encouraging people to vote for the planet, trans rights, and gun reform. Her future vision for the space includes rotating exhibits, maker spaces, maker markets, and other activities to further education and dialogue.
Rebecca, the manager for the location, shares Annemarie’s vision, saying she feels like everyone is so happy when they come in, and she really relishes the diversity of the neighborhood. The collective of businesses at Northstreet send out a vibe, she explained, that they are working together to celebrate nature, food, and local business. She can’t wait for the weather to clear so they can start using their outdoor space for local vendors, flowers, and education. Rebecca reflected on the tough time we’ve all gone through these past few years, and wants to enrich people’s lives on the northside with a welcoming space and delicious pastries.