I can't remember who told me to go in and check out Season+Square, a darling new seasoning store located just east of Brookside on Oak Street. I had driven by and admired that building on the corner of Oak and 62nd for years. When I lived with my Grandma Betty, I would take Oak Street from 75th Street all the way to downtown where I worked at the time, and I always enjoyed driving by the building that is the new home to Season+Square. When I got out of the car, I was impressed at all of the new, locally owned retail shops that were now either open or going to open in this building. It reminded me of the Crestwood Shops a couple of city blocks away. Smaller boutiques and restaurants filling the little commercial cubbie holes. It could not have happened to a nicer commercial spot. More signs that life is improving at 62nd & Oak is the future home of Heirloom Bakery & Hearth going in the old gas station right across the street from this building. It is still under construction now, but I'll be looking forward to coffee and a Build Your Own Breakfast Biscuit from there soon.
When I walked into the shop, I was met with the word "cookery" painted on the wall with the definition underneath. I knew I was home. The shop carries a large selection of bulk, organic spices, olive oils, seasoning salts, cocktail mixes, old fashioned paper drinking straws, lip balms, sauces, salsa, chocolates. Many of them locally or regionally made.
Owner, Andrea Morrow Joseph, was behind the register. She was working at the store on her day off, as you do when you own your own business. We chatted about her store, and I could tell from our conversation how much she really cared about each of the products she carried. She knew the owners that made these products, many of them personally. She could tell you their stories. She had wonderful ideas for how to use each and every thing in her shop. This was retail with a message. Eat well, drink well and save the planet. Andrea also showed me how to use her ecco-friendly, reusable, wax paper that you could fold to make a small snack pouch for your apple slices or use a bigger piece to wrap your sandwich in for lunch. Rinse. Reuse. Repeat. So, so cool.
I asked her to show me some of the local or regional products that she carries and I was shown products from: Wood + Salt, Olive Tree, Hugo Tea Company, For Strange Women, Askinosie Chocolate . . .just to name a few. She said she is still interested in talking to artisans who are making local products that may be a fit for her store. Hint, hint . . .you entrepreneurs.
So stop in and see what is happening at Season+Square, and all of the shops there at 62nd and Oak. Support your local businesses and buy local, my friends.
How local can you get? Join the local KC Local Week Challenge and eat, drink and shop local, August 18th -24th. See more at: kclocalweek.com.