As of Friday, The Haven transitioned to a new pastry chef in collaboration with McCloud’s Clearwater Coffee & Kitchen. Thiess McIntyre will now be baking for both establishments.

After a low-key, month-long soft opening, The Haven Cafe in Dunsmuir had its official grand opening on Saturday in conjunction with the town’s annual Candles in the Canyon festivities.

Owner Rob Pettersen, a former record producer and a longtime purveyor of vintage collectibles, said his new business was partially inspired by Luke’s Diner on the long-running Gilmore Girls TV series. Complete with retro memorabilia, local art, vintage postcards, antiques and second-hand books for sale, The Haven provides the welcoming and engaging, offbeat ambience that Petterson had envisioned.

In addition to antiques and used books for shoppers to browse, the cafe features tables and chairs where customers can have a cup of coffee and a fresh-baked pastry while reading the newspaper, or visiting with friends.

As of Friday, The Haven transitioned to a new pastry chef in collaboration with McCloud’s Clearwater Coffee & Kitchen. Thiess McIntyre will now be baking for both establishments.

Thiess said both cafes will now enjoy the benefit of baked goods prepared by himself in the commercial kitchens of both The Haven in Dunsmuir and the Clearwater (with pastry chef Juls Major) in McCloud, including “super-delish scones by Juls.”

“We’re all about developing local economy,” said Chad Major, who owns and runs Clearwater Coffee with his wife Juls. Chad said that for the local economy to thrive, “It can’t be just one business that thrives.”

So when Pettersen approached the Majors with the creative business idea of combining forces by pooling their resources, they realized that this idea provided a couple of solutions for their continued success. Neither of the small cafes could afford to employ a professional pastry chef full-time. And although Clearwater operates a full cafe, their food truck-size commercial kitchen limits the scope and scale of the food they can produce.

The Haven, on the other hand, has a full-scale commercial kitchen which can benefit both the Dunsmuir and McCloud communities.

With this new arrangement between the two businesses, “We’ll be sourcing some of our bakery products, and The Haven ... will be sourcing some of their bakery products,” explained Chad. “We’re helping each other’s business ... sharing ... and building friendships between the communities of McCloud and Dunsmuir.”

The opportunity for Thiess to have more paid hours doing what he loves to do was a great win-win for all concerned. He can now stay and work in this area which he loves.

“This guy is awesome,” said Chad. “He’s from Germany, and has all of these great recipes in his head!”

Thiess said he received his culinary arts training – which was focused primarily on traditional German and Italian desserts – when he interned under Chef Axel at Oliviana’s Restaurant in Augusta, Georgia. Thiess said the influences that inspired him to become a chef were “travel, and trying new things everywhere I went.”

Because his father was in the U.S. Army, stationed in Germany, and his mother was German, Thiess has been heavily influenced by German and European baking traditions. Born in Bad Zwischenahn, Germany, Thiess graduated from Würzburg American High School. Since then, Thiess has traveled all over the world as a producer of rhythmic electronic music, performing in Dubai, Holland, France, and Las Vegas.

Jan. 8 will be their first show in Mount Shasta, called “Deep & Dank,” at the Vet’s Club. Thiess’s DJ name is “BacPacca” because he’s an avid backpacker.

When not baking or making music, Thiess is either hiking or painting.

Thiess speaks enthusiastically about his interest in molecular gastronomy, and about wanting to bring what he calls a “Taste of Shasta” to his culinary creations, such as chocolates infused with the essence of the local trees of the forest. Describing his liqueur-spiked truffles, Theiss said, “Chocolate truffles-making is my thing ... I always say I like to give people cavities, and get them a little tipsy.” But as a pastry chef with a strong European influence, Thiess admitted, “I don’t pound stuff with sugar.”

His goal for The Haven, Thiess said, is to offer traditional German, Italian, and European-style pastries with local flavors. He listed muffins, tiramisu, marzipan, truffles, gingerbread, and pfeffernüsse (German/European spice cookies) as baked goods which the public can look forward to finding at The Haven in the coming days and weeks.

When asked where he sees himself one year from now, Thiess replied, “Here, but making even better pastries,” adding, “I’m not goin’ nowhere. This is home. I love it out here!”

In addition to fresh-baked goods and desserts, Pettersen said The Haven will also be selling fresh fudge, traditional Bavarian-style roasted nuts, and serving European-style Polish and Bavarian sausage, as well as Louisiana hot links. In the summer, The Haven will be serving hard scoop ice cream cones.

Visitors to The Haven can currently view an art exhibit by award-winning Dunsmuir artist Shery Larson, including her prizewinning “Fiddler On the Bench” painting.

Over the month of December, Dunsmuir shoppers can view The Haven’s Christmas window display, designed by Dunsmuir artist, Lori Watts, featuring a vintage Macy’s department store life-size Santa, retro 1950s Christmas decorations, and a full-size Christmas tree which Watts built out of vintage books.

The Haven Café is located at 5838 Dunsmuir Avenue.