Monday, May 11, 2015

The General Muir Team Advancing in the Bread Business

The General Muir is expanding operations.

The team behind The General Muir is expanding their bakery operations by taking over the adjacent former home of Sweet Monkey frozen yogurt and cupcakes.  The roughly 2,000 square foot froyo / cupcake shop closed months ago and has sat vacant since.  The General Muir team plans to transform the space into a full fledged bakery, offering limited counter service retail products, as the space will function primarily as a production facility.   

It's great to see the froyo shop get a new tenant, but larger spaces, specifically the former Bonefish Grill and La Tagliatella, remain vacant. 

Head baker Rob Alexander will helm the baking program for the new facility.  Alexander started baking in 1996 and has since trained and worked all over the world.  Since arriving in Atlanta in 2008, Alexander has worked in senior baking roles for both H&F Bread Co. and Alon's Bakery.  Alexander joined The General Muir in 2014.  

The Bakery at The General Muir should be open by late summer.   After opening,  the bakery plans to "curate select wholesale clients" with whom to supply breads, according to partner Shelley Sweet.  A slight increase in production is likely but don't be thinking those amazingly tasty cardamom brioche rolls and their popular bagels will last much longer than they do now! 

The General Muir opened at Emory Point in 2013 and is easily the most popular and successful restaurant in the center.  Since opening, The General Muir has received a number of local and national accolades. Among the more notable honors: James Beard Foundation Semifinalist, best chef: southeast (2014), GQ 25 Best New Restaurants in America (2014), and Atlanta Magazine Restaurant of the Year (2013).

Along with The General Muir, the same ownership group runs West Egg Cafe (and pop-up Oddbird), as well as Yalla and Fred's Meat & Bread at Krog Street Market.  

Initial plans call for the new bakery to take some of the burden off of the main restaurant in supplying breads and pastries for the various points of sale.  One market in particular, the Grant Park Farmers Market, was previously serviced by HF Bread but The General Muir took over last year.  

The General Muir team is not alone in the artisanal bread business.  

Buckhead Bread from the Buckhead Life group operates a wholesale bread market at their Corner CafĂ© on Piedmont Road.  Mae's Bakery on Lenox Road has branched out into wholesale breads to extend their brand and capture more sales.  Highland Bakery recently entered into a partnership with Rising Roll to supply them bread and pastries.  

Billy and Kristin Allin of Decatur's Cakes & Ale plan to open their new standalone Inman Park bakery, Proof Bakeshop, in about a week on Hurt Street in Atlanta.  

What are your thoughts on The General Muir expansion? Where is your favorite bakery in Atlanta?  Who in Atlanta makes the best cookie? Croissant? Bagel?  

Please share your thoughts below.  


Anonymous said...

Ali's Cookies makes the best cookies anywhere.

Carl Muth said...

They also won the Georgia Restaurant Associations Restaurant of the Year Award

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