With 25 years of baking and pastry experience behind him, Eric Smith’s drive to bring 5-star hotel desserts to everyone is something to get excited about. “My goal is to take our [Bountiful Bread’s] desserts to the next level,” said Smith in his “southern” Pennsylvanian accent, and what he’s referring to is to the gastronomical level (think food “exploding” in your mouth).
“My idol is Julia Childs. I grew up watching her and she’s the one who inspired me to cook, I even met her in person.” Smith graduated from the New England Culinary School, located in Vermont, and from there traveled all over the country; taking residence at various 5-star hotels from Aspen to South Beach. One thing he has learned about running large kitchen teams is to be humble and kind. “In order to have the respect of your employees / co-workers, you have to lead by example. Do every job you ask your employees to do and to treat them well. Kindness always returns the favor.” Teamwork is essential in any kitchen environment and Smith credits his co-workers, Alex and Amanda who work in “unison” with one another. “We work very well together because we have the same goal— to create and bake the best scratch-made pastries and cakes.”
Another thing that Smith learned was you must stay current. “You always have to be innovating. In order to be relevant and to appeal to people, you have to keep up with the trends.” This means delicious things for Bountiful Bread. Some items to keep an eye out for are more items to the cold case (located in the back of the café) like cheesecake bites, tortes, crème brûlée, and gluten free and vegan items. Plus, more breakfast items such as bear claws, sticky danishes, mini quick breads. Last but not least? “I am experimenting with variations based off the premise of “exploding yogurt”.” Don’t be scared, be impressed.
Beyond the pastries available in-house, Eric and his team are also revving up Bountiful’s Custom Cakes and Wedding Cakes. “We love creating personalized cakes! Baby showers, bridal showers, birthdays, and weddings cakes— bring us your inspiration and we’ll bake the perfect cake for your celebration.” Speaking of cakes, Eric’s favorite at Bountiful? “The Chocolate Indulgence Cake, it is every chocolate lover’s dream come true.”
To learn more or to view Bountiful Bread’s Custom Cakes Menu click here