It is all systems go on Lonsdale Street in Braddon at the former site of Autolyse Cafe and Bakery, as Australian bread royalty Sonoma Bakery gets ready to open its doors at their new store in early August.
Jordan Miller, Head Baker at Sonoma Baking Co. revealed why the beloved bakery renowned for its artisan sourdough decided to open a location in Canberra.
“Sonoma has been delivering to Canberra and surrounds from Sydney for the last few years so we were excited to open our second bakery in a location that has already shown the love for Sonoma bread.”
“The opportunity came up to open a full production bakery on Lonsdale street in a former bakery site. It’s central to most of Canberra and also has some great food operators surrounding our location,” Jordan said.
“Our Canberra store will have Australia’s first installation of some very innovative baking equipment from Kornfeil and Revent. Our menu will be driven from the bakery and full of seasonally changing Roman-style pizza, sandwiches, pies and sausage rolls all freshly baked in front of the guests.”
Front and centre will also be the bread Sonoma have become synonymous with; sourdough, with Jordan sharing that the signature loaf remains a crowd pleaser. As for his personal pick: “My favourite bread is the Miche loaf – a dark 1.9kg malted barley sourdough that is fermented over 16 hours and baked for over an hour. It has the perfect balance of crust and soft crumb.”
Each item that comes out of the Sonoma ovens is handcrafted using simple, authentic techniques, with every loaf of Sonoma sourdough containing freshly-milled flour, filtered water, sourdough starter and sea salt.
Born out of the passion and dedication of the Connole family, the Sonoma story started in the late 1940’s when as a young boy, Kerry Connole would visit his grandparents at their Busy Bee general store in the NSW country town of Bellata and be transfixed watching the local baker kneading, stretching and shaping dough, before putting it in the oven where it was transformed into golden loaves at the adjoining bakery.
Years later in 1997, with a dream of making beautiful wood-fired bread but no baking experience between them, Kerry leased the old bakery and restored it with sons Andrew and Christian. The next few years saw Andrew travel to California to learn all he could about the art of sourdough from the masters of the business. He returned to Australia with ideas, notes, knowledge and a precious jar of sourdough starter that reinvigorated their commitment to baking the perfect loaf of naturally fermented sourdough, Northern California style.
Making a name for themselves by selling their loaves at the Paddington markets in Sydney on Saturdays by 2000, demand was so great that they decided to move Sonoma to Sydney and this year, the legacy grows with the upcoming store opening in Canberra. Make sure to check it out!