Procter Village Café & Bake
Procter Village Café & Bake
What do you get when you mix a longstanding community café with passionate new business operators and chefs? A fresh and innovative take on one of the most acclaimed eateries on Kootenay Lake.
The Procter Village Café, formerly known as the Village Bakery, is located in the historic Procter Schoolhouse on the south shore of Kootenay Lake’s West Arm. Take the Harrop/Procter free 3-minute cable ferry, located about 8 km from Balfour and 25 km from Nelson. The ferry ride provides access to the quaint and quiet communities of Harrop and Procter. Both hamlets deserve a little tour-about to see the history of the area and their unique amenities.
Community investment has provided extensive renovations to the Café, a cozy and modern interior and an expanded patio and even bike racks. The kitchen has also seen significant upgrades, providing all kinds of new culinary possibilities. It’s now home to Bake at the Village, a new enterprise launched by locally trained chefs Amber and Andrew.
“We’ve been working on recipes the past few years and have always wanted to open a pastry shop” notes Amber. “We’ve worked in lots of kitchens so it’s great to break free and express yourself in your own way. It feels like an expression of self.” As you’d expect, the result is a creation of fantastic baked goods, including their take on mouthwatering cinnamon buns that the bakery was well known for. But their vision is to be far more than a “bun run” destination.
“Bake will bring unique nostalgic desserts to the market that no one has ever really experienced before,” states Amber. “We’re transitioning from a breakfast menu to a lunch and dinner menu, with the aim to offer something closer to fine dining in the evening, perhaps with a liquor license too.” Unique and adventurous fare is part of their vision, as is a broad selection of Gluten Free items that go beyond normal expectations of what that should be. Creative and flavourful sandwiches, salads, and baked goods (including pies, cakes, cookies and bread) and a coffee bar provide plenty of options.
The community has welcomed them with open arms. After the previous café closed in 2018, the Procter Community Society stepped in to resurrect the iconic bakery. Fundraising, grants, and many months of hard work has paid off in a unique partnership. Special recognition needs to go to board member and volunteer extraordinaire, Lisa Norris! The Society owns the café, while Bake makes the goods. “Everyone is really awesome, kind, generous and supportive,” notes Amber.
Down the road, the team behind Bake hopes to expand into Nelson and be part of the dynamic food scene there. In the short term, they’re working on a new menu items and plan to stay open through the winter.
Although Procter is a small community, the ferry runs non-stop every day, making it a unique rural destination for foodies all year long. The combination of a scenic drive, bike, or paddle and a tasty café is a recipe for success. #findingawesome | #explorekootenaylake