Encouraging Entreprenuership

By Mark Urban
The Record-Eagle, Traverse City, Mich.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) “Center City Kitchen” in Traverse City, Michigan offers budding chefs a commercial oven, induction cook tops, a proofer oven, reach-in refrigerators and even storage for food entrepreneurs who need help launching and or growing their businesses.


By definition, there is no more appropriate description of Center City Kitchen.

‘Traverse City’s Incubator Kitchen’ is not only a controlled environment for the care and protection of small objects, but it is also a place for things to develop under specific circumstances.

“We’ll grow as we need to grow,” said Ryan Wells, who co-owns Center City Kitchen with his wife, Meagan.

The facility offers a commercial oven, induction cook tops, a proofer oven, reach-in refrigerators and storage for companies that need access to equipment. It also has three-compartment sink and a mop sink for clean-up.

“We’re not to be confused with a short-order cook kitchen,” Wells said. “We’re an incubator production kitchen. We can be used as a commissary kitchen or for food trucks to do prep and their morning work as well as at the end of the day, get rid of the gray water, mop the trucks out, hook up the power, that kind of thing.”

The kitchen space was exactly what Sea Food Driven was seeking when the food cart operated inside Little Fleet in November. Sea Food Driven started working on Halloween and had product ready to serve the next day.

“We knew that if we were going to be at the Little Fleet that we were going to need a commissary kitchen because a bar isn’t going to have enough sufficient facilities for us to go to,” said Sea Food Driven co-owner Allison Thacker. “We were in here, we got inspected and we started all of our prep so we could hit the ground running at Little Fleet Nov. 1. So we didn’t have to waste a single day.”

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