BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - It’s a story that's been over twenty years in the making surrounding one Bakersfield woman with a knack for sweets.
Barbara Kimber returned to 23ABC News for one last time on Tuesday, in hopes that her well-known dessert finds a new home with an entrepreneur looking for a concept for a small business start up.
Kimber started making her pineapple cobbler back in the 90’s, and Tuesday Kimber said she is only making a few more batches of that same pineapple cobbler, "I was never ever ready to say goodbye to it but I am now, so this is it."
The small business entrepreneur had a dream of taking her cobbler national after her experience catering in Kern County. Once she proved to be a hit in Bakersfield she received recommendations from the local Vons, Red Lion Hotel, Trader Joes and the Double Tree Hotel in Bakersfield for the mass production of her cobblers.
However, like any small business Kimber ran into some hurdles when trying to land her cobbler on an assembly line for wide scale production with major retailers, "You have to go through corporate in order to get all of them so I kept running into mergers and I just had to keep falling back," Kimber said.
At the time when Kimber was well recognized by the larger organizations she said she didn’t have the man power to make it happen by herself either, "I had more of a demand for the cobbler than what I could produce," Kimber said.
Even though Kimber wouldn't share her secret ingredients with 23ABC she agreed to let our newsroom put her cobblers to the test to see if the taste was still a hit and it didn't disappoint, "I'm a fan of how just like different it is you know and that to go along with the little crust on top," 23ABC News reporter Scott Scheahen said.
Kimber said former Bakersfield mayor Harvey Hall also couldn't get enough of Kimbers Cobblers, “He came and his very favorite was the pineapple boysenberry, so much so that he was eating so much that I had to say Mr. Mayor please don't eat too much because I didn't want him to get sick."
Kimber took marketing classes through the Marketing Source in Bakersfield along with the help of the Small Business Development Center in Kern County to learn more tricks to the trade of being a successful small business owner. Now she said she is ready to share her tips with the right entrepreneur. "I will train and teach people how to do it for starters, I know it will take time but I'm willing to do that," Kimber said.
If you are an entrepreneur looking for a concept for a small business start up and you would like more information on Kimber’s Cobblers you can call 661-398-1718.