The traditional bakehouse concept gets a facelift with the opening of Puckles Family Bakehouse in Springfield, Queensland.
Brett Davis and Bree Mitchell are spearheading a new bakery concept in Queensland on behalf of Victoria’s Plarre family.
The Plarre family has expanded north with the opening of Puckles Family Bakehouse, styled after the traditional bakehouses of decades past. It is the invention of Steve and Mike Plarre, who have named the store as a tribute to their great-grandfather. His first bakery on Puckle St in Moonee Ponds, Melbourne, opened in 1911.
Puckles is the first of a planned franchise model that blends oldtime bakery values with the latest in digital media. It is an initiative of the Plarre family, partners in the successful Victorian business Ferguson Plarre Bakehouses.
Offering cakes, éclairs, slices, pies, pas
ebration cakes, the bakery specialises in classic baked treats made from longstanding family recipes.
From an online shop to YouTube promotions to a customer portal via Facebook, the business has embraced online technology to build relationships with customers.
Bakery manager Brett and store manager Bree were invited by the Plarre family to move from Victoria to Queensland to start up the first business.
“Queensland is apparently the biggest pie-eating state in Australia, they love it up here. I’ve got a bit of Queensland heritage too, my brother was born in Queensland, my parents lived here for quite a while as well. I’ve still got family up here as well, so that sort of appealed to me as well,” Brett told Australian Baking Business
“We all just love Queensland, it’s a good location for us to start up.”
The business hinges on the concept of ongoing production throughout the day. They produce smaller amounts more regularly, so instead of storing the product for too long, they are all baked and place straight in the pie warmer as customers come through.
The 27-year-old baker said they have received a lot of positive feedback from the store and its business model.
“It’s been unbelievable. The amount of customers we have come back say how good it is. We have customers come back three or four times buying pies [because of] the standard and the quality and how good it is. We already have a massive regular customer base, so it’s been unreal,” Brett says.
Puckles director Steve Plarre said the family was excited about building a new business in Queensland.
“Springfield is all about vision and creating a new community and, given we are launching something new with Puckles, this is the perfect place for our flagship store,” Steve says.
“This is the first of what we hope will be many stores throughout Queensland.
“We are looking to launch our franchise offer in the near future.”
Part of Puckles’ behind-the-scenes offer will be industry support through practical training programs.
“We firmly believe in reinvesting in our industry. There are some outstanding independent bakeries here in Queensland and we look forward to contributing to the overall growth of the industry,” Steve says.
The business continues the Plarre family’s commitment to sustainability, best known through the Ferguson Plarre export-grade manufacturing facility which won the Origin Gold Banksia Award for Excellence in Sustainability in 2009.
Puckles’ store fit-out features recycled timber tables and external wall tiles, low-energy lighting and an established environmental management system. The online shop is designed to give maximum convenience to customers while also reducing the levels of waste common to the sector.
The Plarre family is focused on expanding Puckles in regional Queensland.