In 1979, Margaret Junkhan established her kitchenware store after several years of teaching French cooking classes with the Ames Continuing Education Program. She saw a demand for a store, within the Ames, Iowa community, when cooking starting to become the "in-thing" to do with Julia Child coming to the horizon and awakening interested in French cooking.
After 39 years, Margaret transitioned the store ownership to Mindy Bergstrom, a Minnesota native, who wanted to transplant roots in the Ames community. Mindy was a regular customer, when visiting family in Ames, for a handful of years prior to purchasing the business.
Although under new ownership in 2018, Mindy has kept the same values Margaret had for 39 years.
Over 20 years combined Team Experience
New and Interesting Gadgets
Cooks' Emporium is involved with the Ames Chamber of Commerce, Cytes as well as the Ames Main Street - Downtown Ames organization where Mindy serves on the Executive Board since 2019.
In The Press
March 3, 2018: Ames Tribune - New Owner of Cooks' Emporium Planning 2019 Remodel
March 9, 2018: Gourmet Insider - Cooks' Emporium gets New Owner
March 2, 2019: Gourmet Insider - HTI Annouces 2019 Best of Award Winners, Cooks' Emporium Rising Star Retailer
March 12, 2019: Gourmet Insider - Cooks' Emporium Remodel Marks One Year with New Owner
April 12, 2019: Ames Tribune - Cooks' Emporium Reopening its Doors after Remodel
April 15, 2019: Gourmet Insider - Cooks' Emporium Reopens
May 20, 2019: Ames Tribune - Nook & Nest opening on Main Street this Saturday, Cooks' Emporium sister store
October 16, 2019: Gourmet Insider - Cooks' Emporium Celebrates 40th Anniversary
October 17, 2019: Ames Tribune - Cooks' Emporium Celebrating 40 years in Ames' Main Street
November 1, 2019: Ames Chamber of Commerce - Mindy Bergstrom named Entrepreneur of the year
November 18, 2019 7AM: KHOI Radio - Local Talk: 7:40AM Mindy Bergstrom promotes Small Business Saturday
December 31, 2019: Ames Tribune: New Downtown Business Aims to Create a Waste-free Future
March 12, 2020: Supplies run low Businesses affected as COVID-19 concerns continue to rise
May 14, 2020: Small Businesses take a long view on reopening
July 31, 2020: Nook & Nest expands next store with Stationery
October 21, 2020: Woman who Create
November 13, 2020: Z.W. Mercantile relocations near sister stores