Please enjoy this guest post from Master Baker and Bakery Consultant Michael Eggebrecht.
A few weeks back I got the chance to work with Andres Corazzini at his bakery in New Haven, Connecticut, Whole G.
The first thing that I had to ask was, “What does Whole G stand for?” Well, it stands for Whole Grain, but it also seems to be a slight tribute to the style of baking that Andres specializes in- German Breads!
Whole Grain German bread is Andres’s specialty and believe me, he is very good at reproducing the kind of loaves you might find in only the best bakeries throughout Germany. Take this statement from one who has traveled extensively in Germany and through numerous bakeries- his breads are first class.
I was there to do a test on one of Andres’s WP roll machines for another customer, but unfortunately it was cancelled at the last minute. But this gave me the chance to just enjoy getting to know Andres for a couple of days and also to bake a batch of his Volkenbrot Bread with him. This is something I have never made before- at least not the way Andres makes it.
Andres received his training on German Breads first here in the United States at a baking school and then later followed his instructor back to Germany to his bakery, where Andres was able to apprentice for a period of time. Not only did Andres learn about baking great bread, but he also learned what equipment to buy for his new bakery to produce first class whole grain breads. Yes, of course he bought mainly WP Kemper Bakery Systems equipment- you’re reading this on our website, after all! But the most interesting thing that I found is that not only did Andres buy the best equipment he could find but he truly invested in his bakery, unlike so many others. Yes, equipment can be expensive, especially for a new business that is getting pounded from every side when opening, but without a doubt the two biggest expenses for most artisan bakeries are the ingredients and the labor to produce once they’re up and running.
What I enjoyed most about the visit, besides meeting a new friend, is that Andres did so many things right in the beginning. Andres not only is making a great product but that product is unique to his market. He chose not to compete head to head with the bigger bakeries that are mass producing Ciabatta and baguettes, but he chose to produce a product that is very healthy and packed full of whole grains and also has great flavor and texture. Additionally, he went into his business after doing a proper apprenticeship at the type of bakery he planned to open. Andres also did not forget the marketing aspect of the business. Since he planned to offer his breads on retail shelves, he designed his own unique package and logo that is very European and eye catching.
I believe that he is on the path to success and we all wish him luck in addition to his talents. The baking industry is not easy, but going in with your eyes wide open and the proper training sure begins to swing the odds of success more in ones favor. If you’re ever in the New Haven area, look up Andres- or more importantly, look up his breads at the local store. I am sure that you will be as impressed as I was.
P.S. Check back soon about our upcoming baking class that will be held at Whole G this fall.