The Yale Bakery has cooked up a plan to move locations this summer.
Currently situated in the basement of Commons, the Yale Bakery — a full service bake shop that produces all the baked goods served in Yale’s residential colleges and campus retail outlets — will relocate to a new facility at 344 Winchester Ave. at the end of July or early August. According to head baker Keri Logan, demand for the bakery’s offerings continues to rise, and the Yale Bakery requires greater space and a more convenient layout to ensure product quality.
The new 3,000 square foot location will be 500 square feet larger than the current space and will also provide the bakery with a variety of upgraded kitchen equipment including a set of new ovens, said Director of Hospitality & Maintenance Dan Flynn.
“Since much of the bakery’s equipment is well beyond its useful life and the catering department has outgrown its space in Commons, it made sense to relocate,” said Culinary Operations Manager Veronica Arcoraci. “The new location [is] providing much-needed new equipment and creating the opportunity for other uses of the space in Commons.”
Logan said the new ovens will be critical in ensuring that the large volume of desserts are baked evenly. She added that she looks forward to using the pair of new “top of the line” ovens — the same type that is used at the Culinary Institute of America — to produce more upscale desserts.
The new location will also provide a key advantage in terms of design, Logan said. Rather than the “T” shaped layout of the current kitchen, the new layout will be more efficiently organized and not as scattered as the Commons basement, she said.
Still, the new location will make the Yale Bakery farther removed from the students it is serving.
Even though the bakery will be farther away, Logan said she hopes the move will better connect the bakery to campus by providing an improved product to students.
“Number one, we are here for the students and we value and love what we do,” Logan said.
With the new space, Logan said the bakery can also seriously pursue providing more health-conscious and allergy free products in the dining halls.
Arcoraci said the bakery will continue to schedule events like the “Cookie Tasting” booth it set up in Commons two weeks ago, both to gather more feedback and to engage with the student body. As the end of the year is quickly approaching, this type of outreach will likely begin again next fall, she said.
“We want to get feedback,” said Yale baker Rusty Hamilton. “We hope to see what people like and dislike so we can better serve the students.”
The bakery first moved into the basement of Commons in the early 1960s, Logan said. Before that time, the operations were decentralized, and each residential college kitchen was responsible for baking its own goods.
Beyond producing the baked goods for all dining halls and campus stores, the bakery’s other responsibilities include working closely with the colleges and Yale Dining’s catering department to create customized desserts for special functions, Arcoraci said. With 48 hours notice, students can order standard or custom cakes from the bakery, she added.
Eight separate catering functions account for approximately 40 to 50 percent of the bakery’s business.
Samantha Bensinger ’17, a production and design staffer for the News and the only student interviewed who had ordered from the Yale Bakery, said they did a “fantastic job” with the cake she purchased earlier this month for the Freshman Olympics celebration. Once she placed the order, she heard back from the office the same day to confirm her design and she said it was ready for her on the day she requested to pick it up.
However, Bensinger said many students do not know about this type of opportunity, and recommended the bakery pursue efforts to publicize itself as it prepares to move.
At its annual Thanksgiving pie sale, the bakery provides more than 1000 pies and cheesecakes to the Yale community for their family celebrations.