Kat Robinson, our Head Baker at Bartlett’s, has 15 solid years on the team. Her journey into the world of baking began in her formative years, working in various restaurants and handling food, ultimately mastering the art of making good bread. However, it wasn’t until she enrolled at the New England Culinary Institute in Montpelier, Vermont, that she specialized in the art of baking and pastries.
Baking is a form of art, and Kat is the artist whose success is determined by connection. Her philosophy is summarized with a simple quote, “Every culture has music and food. We can all form a connection through those things.” Kat’s creations evoke a wide range of emotions and memories in all of us as we savor that first bite or inhale the enticing aroma of her carefully crafted delights.
Each day, Kat walks into the bakery and becomes the conductor of her culinary orchestra, working with her team to utilize everyone’s strengths. In these challenging times, as the world grapples with various issues, Kat believes that food can help bridge divides between people. Her famous words, “Eat someone else’s food and feel the love,” encapsulate her belief in the unifying power of culinary creations.
While baking is an art, it is also a science, similar to chemistry. Kat readily agrees, explaining, “It involves managing various chemical reactions and adapting to different mediums.” She relies on precise organization and control to ensure consistency in everything she creates. This sets baking apart from cooking, where the results can vary significantly based on the chef’s approach, making each dish unique.
Despite the precision and artistry required, being a baker is often a thankless job. Everyone has their opinions on how things should be made, and the ingredients and processes dictate the baker’s every move. However, as Kat wisely points out, success depends on what you make with the ingredients and tools at your disposal.
In a world where many aspire to be chefs, becoming a baker is less common, often underestimated as a “fun” activity. Yet, when it comes to catering to the masses, baking is a craft like any other that demands dedication and education. Skilled bakers like Kat are a rarity, and although many of us are quick to think baking is easy, there are few and far between who can actually stand up to the baking sheet.
So, what keeps Kat dedicated to her role as a baker at Bartlett’s? It’s the people. The bonds she shares with her colleagues, whom she considers family, are vital. Equally important are the individuals she bakes for: the hardworking laborers, construction workers, fishers, and true islanders. She channels her creativity daily, passionately crafting baked goods not just for herself but for our loyal customers. Kat values the freedom to express herself, explore, learn, and, most importantly, indulge in a job she genuinely loves. We’re thankful for her every day.