Cara Weaver has opened Cooks on Main, a new kitchen and pantry outfitter located at 59 Main St. in downtown Houlton. Credit: Joseph Cyr / Houlton Pioneer Times

HOULTON, Maine — Wanting to return home, a native Aroostook County artisan has launched the only business of its kind north of Bangor.

Cara Weaver opened Cooks on Main, a kitchen and pantry outfitter, as a way to escape a grueling travel schedule that saw her traverse around the state selling her handcrafted items.

After years of selling her wares statewide, Weaver knew local people had no options for kitchen supplies. Seeing that need in her hometown of Houlton provided just the right amount of motivation for her to open up a permanent storefront, while continuing to work with a line of products she knows well.

“My husband, Nick, and I wanted to come home with thoughts of retiring,” Weaver said. “But instead we decided to come home and open a business. If it is food-related, we probably have it. We are the only kitchen store north of Bangor.”

She opened her 500-square-foot shop on Oct. 15 and has seen her client base grow steadily in the first month of business.

Weaver crafts unique wooden cutting boards, bowls and plates by laser-etching designs into the wood. Before moving back to Houlton, she traveled around the state selling her wares. But hauling a trailer so many miles for so long was tiring, she said.

Weaver grew up in Houlton and moved back to The County in September. Her husband, Nick, a Presque Isle native, is temporarily at their former home in Lincoln Plantation, where he works for a hydro-electric company.

Cooks on Main is located at 59 Main St. in downtown Houlton, in the building commonly referred to as the Fischman Mall. Credit: Joseph Cyr / Houlton Pioneer Times

Working in the kitchen field has been a family tradition of sorts for Weaver. Her mother, Cathy Bither, taught the culinary program for the Region Two School of Applied Technology for many years.

“I basically grew up in a kitchen,” Weaver said. “Food is definitely in my blood.”

The store’s selections of soups, gravy and sauces have been among the most popular items, she said. There is even a section for dog treats.

Cooks on Main features a wide variety of kitchen tools and food items, as well as gifts related to the kitchen. As the holiday season approaches, the store is showcasing gift ideas and stocking stuffers.

Gift certificates are available, and Weaver also offers a “wish list” people can fill out that she will then hold on file for others looking for gift ideas.

Cooks on Main is open Tuesday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. A celebratory open house is also planned for Dec. 3.

For more information on Cooks on Main, call 207-532-2661 or the Facebook page.

Correction: A previous version of this story misstated Nick Weaver’s occupation. He works for a hydro-electric company.