Chef Series


Tessa Morhardt, Editor in Chief

Madison College had the pleasure of having Lisa Ludwinski, owner of Sister Pie, on the monthly Chef Series earlier in March.

            Ludswinski first started going to school for theater, but then ended up moving back home. Upon her return home, she started to bake. Sister Pie began in her parent’s home about 40 minutes outside of Detroit, Michigan, in a small town called Milford.

             Sister Pie stayed in Ludwinski’s parent’s house for a year, then moved to a shared commercial building for another year. Finally, Sister Pie moved to an actual bakery in 2015.

            Ludwinski trained under Christina Tosi, a talented baker, and former Milk Bar employee. Tosi taught Ludwinski the baking basics.

            While shadowing Tosi, Ludwinski found out how fast a business can grow and spread across the country. She realized that she did not want to open multiple shops.

Ludwinski was grateful for everything that she was able to experience while she was shadowing Tosi and working with several wonderful women.

Ludwinski expressed, “I never wanted to open up a business in New York. I think the competition element of it was one thing, but I was traveling back to Michigan quite a bit during that period, and I had gotten to do an internship through Momofuku.”

            Ludwinski’s advice to other bakers is to “spend a little more time in the industry … sometimes I wish I would have found out five years earlier that I was into this so I could go into more kitchens and learn more.”

            Ludwinski has really looked at all the negative kitchen cultures and the typical patriarchy within the kitchen setting. Sister Pie created a kitchen culture that is based on kindness, direct communications, and being able to make mistakes.

Being able to change the food culture is what inspired her to be around the group of women who she works with. Sister Pie focuses on “… how different we can be from more traditional kitchen culture.”

            Sister Pie is always working on how they can improve and become better in the workforce. Sister Pie has put much thought and effort into the rules that they set and the handbook that they made. They talk about privilege, race, ways of thinking about things differently, and opportunities.

Ludwinski makes sure that all her staff know what the company’s ultimate goals are and that they are talking with one another. Ludwinski ensures that if a problem comes up, the staff will handle it in a manner of nonviolent communication, by starting with observations and talking about feelings and needs.

She wants to make sure that everyone is given a chance while running her business. According to Ludwinski, the planet, people, and profit are the things that run a sustainable business. People are the top priority, but the planet and profit closely follow.

            Sister Pie also has a cookbook called “Sister Pie” with recipes and stories of the bakery. You are able to find the book on Amazon for $14.59

            You can also find Sister Pie at 8066 Kercheval Ave, Detroit, MI. To gather more information about them, visit