It couldn’t have been a worse time for a shop to have to close its doors but that’s what confronted the owners of Erindale Cakery Bakery last December.
Fully stocked for Christmas trade, the bakery had to throw out all its goods after black smoke from a fire in another Erindale Centre store engulfed it and contaminated everything.
Undaunted, baker/pastry chef Clinton Sheehan and wife Shubana got on with the job of having the store professionally cleaned, making insurance claims and arranging finance to cover rent and staff wages.
The last thing they needed after losing all their stock was to lose their full-time staff as well.
Co-owner Shubana Sheehan said it had been a long wait due to Canberra’s Christmas shutdown but the bakery would be back better than ever today when it reopens, to the delight of its loyal customer base.
Shubana said people had been asking when the bakery would be back in business and with a combination of advertising, signage and word of mouth, they are bracing for a bumper day.
“We’ve been trying to stock up as much as we can, we think we’re going to get smashed,” she said.
With everything made on site, it’s been a hectic few days baking, prepping and filling the cool rooms for the big day.
Customers can look forward to vouchers and giveaways to celebrate the reopening as well as being able to once more savour Clinton’s specialty baked goods, including his trademark pies.
“Everyone says he’s got the best pies in Kambah. He’s good at everything he does but I reckon his pies are the best,” Shubana said.
“It’s how he makes his pastry, you can go to other places and see how the pastry is flaky at the top of the pie and always falling off, and it shouldn’t be like that, and the bottom should be nice and sturdy. You can tell when you’re eating the pie if everything is falling out and it’s not staying together, the pastry’s not done well.”
Shubana said Clinton, who bought the business in 2011, also turned out a great cake and they were hoping to bring back the popular novelty products that were time-consuming but a ‘lot of fun’.
She said he whipped up creations from customer requests and based on pictures they brought in, producing cakes in the shape of animals, trains and cars – even a topsy-turvy car track cake with three tiers.
Clinton also plans to introduce a line of new sourdough bread to complement his signature sourdough and meet growing customer demand.
With Easter not too far away, people can expect trays of hot cross buns in two to three weeks including traditional, chocolate and fruit varieties as well as last year’s innovative raspberry, white chocolate, and peppermint choc chip. Clinton has new flavours in mind.
But today their varied clientele can enjoy the staples they have missed, good coffee and great conversation.