First look: Inside the new Cake Shop Bakery
- Credit: Archant
The Woodbridge institution has moved premises and is now selling cheese, wine and sourdough soft serve ice cream.
The owner of one of Suffolk’s best-loved, award-winning bakeries has just unveiled its new look in a new location this week.
David Wright recently opened the doors to The Cake Shop Bakery on Woodbridge’s Thoroughfare, and cannot wait to welcome in customers.
Fans of The Cake Shop will be pleased to know it hasn’t travelled far, simply slipping into the premises next door (formerly The Fire Station café), where a series of renovations and works have been carried out over the summer, creating a foodie destination David says gives a nod to the past, while embracing an exciting world of new possibilities.
“The most important thing for me, is to keep it fresh and fun for everyone. We want to go back to our heritage and what we’re really good at, but to play with that so we and the customers really enjoy what we’re doing.”
All the usual baked goods The Cake Shop’s become known for will be complemented by a raft of innovations.
“That includes things like a brand-new selection of pies,” says David. “And getting towards Christmas we’re thinking of adding a really nice range of pastry-based delights. We’re going to concentrate more on the cakes as well and do more on that front, so we’ve been working hard behind the scenes and we’ll be bringing in new products all the time. It’s this whole idea of looking back through our 75 year history of baking – we’re looking at things like battenbergs and florentines.”
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Despite cooler weather blowing in, David says soft serve ice cream, which was trialled over the summer, is definitely on the menu at the new shop. The nostalgic treat has seen a surge in popularity in the last two years, with artisan ice cream stores popping up in cities across the UK – and the baker’s keen to bring these trends to the county he lives in and loves.
“The soft serve’s quite different,” he smiles. “The idea is the flavours will be ‘stuff on toast’. Our base flavour is toasted sourdough, and customers can add toppings they might have on toast. We came up with things like peanut butter and jam, and marmalade. But people can just have the base on its own. The tests came out really nice actually. Quite malty, like the inside of a Malteser. It’s fun and not pretentious. After all, we don’t have vanilla in Suffolk, we don’t grow it here, and we’re just taking bread that would be thrown away and trying to be creative with it – to not be wasteful.”
Elsewhere in the shop will be products that go well with bread – from a range of farmhouse cheeses sourced via Neal’s Yard Dairy, which has been championing British dairies in lockdown, to refillable bottles of organic wine, and craft beer.
Keen home bakers will be pleased to know The Cake Shop is also stocking everything they need to make good bread in their own kitchens. “Flour was our biggest seller in lockdown,” David adds, “so we wanted to build on that. Like everyone else, we’ve had to reassess what we do this year. We’ll offer flour, yeast, sourdough starter, lots of things. I think that’s really great. If we can support interest in baking it’s beneficial for everyone.”
Currently seating won’t be available at the new premises, with plans for cheese and bread boards with wine to be served outside in the warmer months next year, but takeaways are still very much on the cards – and online ordering is to be available.
“We’re building on our sandwiches and salads, using local suppliers, and will be doing things like breakfast pots, using up as much of possible of what we’ve got to save on waste. That’s a big focus for us. We’re currently in the process of changing our plastic bags to biodegradable bags, and looking at biodegradable cellophane.”
Coffee-lovers needn’t fear for their favourite ‘brew’ as the new premises will continue to serve Fire Station coffee alongside other hot drinks. But there are changes here – which David says he believes are for the better.
“I’ve moved us away from using an espresso machine. We’ve got a really nice filter machine, meaning we’ll be serving either white coffee or black coffee. It just makes sense. It means we can offer better value for money and provide people with faster service which, for me, is important. If you’re popping by for a breakfast bacon roll and coffee on your way to work, you don’t want to be waiting a long time. It should make a great difference.”
Meal deals on breakfasts, lunch items and end-of-day products are being introduced, and home deliveries (launched at the height of lockdown) are continuing.
“I’m excited,” David adds. “I don’t think the challenges for any business are over, but we’re looking forward, especially to our 75th anniversary next year.”