“The kitchen is haunted,” Parreno says. “I don’t believe in paranormal activity, but the sound of shrieking was coming out of the oven at the stovetop the other night.”
“We both heard it,” Conner says. “The old morgue was below the kitchen. Sometimes the sinks will turn on and off. We leave little gifts of macarons. Then we take them because we can’t leave a dirty kitchen. The ghost has been on our side so far.”
“We don’t have the job security that other generations are used to, and I think that makes us a little more fearless,” Conner says.
What they do have is a solid baking pedigree. Conner worked at Three Women and an Oven, and Parreno was a production assistant at Christopher Elbow before moving to Bloom. For Milk & Honey,
Parreno, 30, oversees the baking. Conner, 28, is in charge of decorating.
“She’s Type A, and I’m Type Z,” Conner explains.
Milk & Honey’s macarons are slightly larger than the traditional variety (that is, a little bigger than an Oreo) and packed with buttercream filling. The flavors now in the case at the Roasterie Café include vanilla-bean lavender, salted caramel, pistachio, and a hazelnut mocha made with the Roasterie’s Super Tuscan espresso beans.
“Our macarons have a slightly crispy outer layer,” Parreno says. “You want that domed shell and ruffled edge.”
“The shell isn’t overly sweet,” Conner adds. “It’s just about starting the conversation. The crunch is the most important part.”
With a website slated to launch this month (milkandhoneykc.com) and online ordering on the horizon, the business partners are looking to open their own storefront next year. Until then, they’ll just have to make peace with that ghost.