Back in 2012, Ree and her husband Ladd lost their marbles and bought an old building in their town of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. They spent several years renovating the property, and it eventually became the bustling shop, restaurant, and bakery that we now know as The Mercantile.
The Merc first opened its doors on October 31, 2016, but the building had a long history before the Drummonds got ahold of it. It was built in 1903 and became the Osage Mercantile Company in 1910. After that, it was transformed into the Osage Realty Company, then a telephone company, and, later, a C.R. Anthony department store.
The Merc was practically destined to become a general store—shopping is in the building’s bones—but Ree also wanted to create a deli and bakery where locals and visitors could gather. Now, it’s all of the above.
Getting the Merc up and running was a huge task, but Ree can't imagine her life without it today. “It took a lot to get here, but now it brings me so much joy,” she says. Let's take a look at all The Mercantile has to offer.
First up: What does The Mercantile sell?
The Merc has a little bit of everything, including clothing, home goods, kitchenware, jewelry, and more. Ree hand-picks each and every whimsical find based on one rule: Every item has to make her smile.
In the beginning, not everyone was convinced that her offbeat picks—like finger puppets of historical figures, and Marie Antoinette salt and pepper shakers—would sell. But they flew off the shelves when The Merc opened. "I was mocked and ridiculed by my friends at first, and I feel so vindicated!" Ree says.
If you want to see what Ree has to offer but you can’t get to Pawhuska just yet, don't worry. You can shop some of her best-selling items online.
What’s on the menu at the restaurant?
All of your favorite comforting classics like biscuits and gravy, breakfast burritos, pancakes, and Ree’s famous cinnamon rolls can be ordered for breakfast, served from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.
The lunch and dinner menus include some delicious, unexpected dishes, like chips and queso and a roasted beet salad, plus plenty of southern classics, like Ladd’s Favorite Chicken Sandwich and fried pork chops. Packing tip: You might want to wear pants with an elastic waistline!
What about the bakery?
You can grab a great cup of coffee and a delicious pastry at the upstairs bakery. Choose from freshly baked pies, sticky buns, muffins, bars, and cookies, and pick up a pack of Ree's famous cinnamon buns to go. You can freeze them and enjoy them at home anytime!
After you've picked up your treat, continue shopping or grab a seat and stay awhile. The bistro tables and comfy sofas are great for relaxing alone or catching up with friends.
Does the restaurant take reservations?
Not at the moment, but parties of 15 or more can reserve a Dining Experience. (Learn more about that here.) However, you just give your name and number at the door, and you'll get a text when your table's ready. So you can walk around town without having to stand in a line.
Happy shopping and snacking!
Megan Stein is the executive editor for The Pioneer Woman, and oversees entertainment, features, and news for the website. Whether it's catching up on the latest true crime podcast, or re-watching the best '80s movies for the zillionth time, she's always here to talk about anything and everything relating to pop culture.