04 May 2012

Recently, I reported that Leske's, the old Scandinavian bakery in Bay Ridge that closed last year, would be reopening soon, using the same bakers as before. In response, I got this comment from a reader:
I live across the street from what used to be Leske's, and according to the new managers its going to re open with same recipes and bakers... that is a FALSE and a poor fake!!! All the bakers found new jobs and they are stable. One of the bakers is baking most of the stuff at Jean Danet bakery across the street from Leske's and there kringler and black and whites taste REAL good. It's similar to Leske's.. Please dont believe that fake sign! The new owners are lying to every one! 
I have no idea who's telling the truth here. But the timing of the comment was a coincidence, because I had been thinking about Jean Danet bakery in recent days, and wondering about its history.

Jean Danet is just a couple blocks to the north of Leske's on Fifth Avenue. It has an old-looking vertical sign on the side of the building, but a shiny new facade and interior. I expect the bakery's been renovated recently. Ironically, the redo's specific intent was obviously to make the facade look old! Look at the fake-ancient-ruin mix of bricks and plaster.

Anyway, here's the story according to the Danet website: "Originally started as a french pastry shop forty years ago, Pat Giura decided to keep the original name of Jean Danet and use the owner’s original recipes when the Giura family bought the business back in 1998. It was a natural fit for the graduate of The French Culinary Institute and certified Wilton Cake Decorator who grew up working at Savarese Italian Pastry Shoppe, owned by his parents, Cathy and Mario Giura."

Interesting pedigree. If the Leske's bakers are indeed employed there, the pedigree just got even better.


Harry Hawk said...

Hi, This is Harry Hawk from Leske's Bakery (I'm one of the managers and a culinary consultant here...).

The anonymous comments sound rather damming, but we stand by our own well published statement that we have hired many of bakers (and some of the counter staff) who previously worked at Leske's.

We now have four bakers who previously worked here. Open since 1961, clearly many bakers have come through the doors. We have Chi (25+ years a Leske's), Stephen (who trained at Olsen's starting at age 14), Armando & Tommy.

Harry Hawk said...

While the anonymous comments seem rather damming, Leske's Bakery stands by our well published comments that we have hired back many of the original bakers. The count now stands at four.

Open since 1961 clearly many bakers have come through the doors. We have Chi (25+ years) Stephen (started at Olsen's at age 14), Armando and Tommy.