We are often asked how long we have been open, but the story started years before that!
Yann Blanchard had always been a pastry chef but after being the executive pastry chef at the Fairmont Palliser, he decided to have his own little pastry shop in Calgary.
As we were working on an extensive business plan, it was decided that Mission would be the perfect fit. Looking for the perfect place, a family member strolling down the street of Mission with baby #1 stumbled upon a bit of a mess of a house. It had a “for lease” sign and we called!
This is once all the vegetation was removed. It was actually worse the first time we saw it as it had a jungle in front of it!
That is how the relationship with our wonderful landlord started 16 years ago and still going strong.
It took 3 long years to go through all the permits (Land Use Re-designation, appeal, Development Permit, Building Permit) and it definitely felt even longer!
All the construction was also a challenge: to take a house built in 1912 and bring it up to 2000’s codes is no small feat!
Once all done and all yellow, we could ask for our business license. It was delivered on December 22nd 2009, so we worked all night and opened our doors the very next day. The answer to the first question (how long we have been open) is now 11 years!
Fun fact: The house was always painted yellow when we opened but customers kept on asking us when we had done it up to two years after!
Lovely customers enjoying a festive day for Bastille Day with Marcel le Macaron & accordéon!
We had such a good ride for years and of course, went through the flood in 2013!
Waters rising at the back of the house onto the parking lot with storm water drain overflowing. We did not know how far it would go yet.
The water came all the way to 23rd avenue (that is the Elbow river being so large that it came in land for blocks) and ended up having to evacuate as Mission was in an emergency state with no power for a large week. It was incredibly stressful, but we got lucky. The water stopped only meters away from the house and no water sipped through the foundations. As our kitchen is in the basement, we would have lost so much (you cannot really take your oven or any large and heavy piece of equipment with you and bring it up a floor!)
Chef Yann Blanchard in front of one of our large ovens (baking baguettes!)
After the 2015 Calgary recession and Covid pandemic, we are still standing strong.
We had to adapt tremendously to the new times. We now have a pickup window and delivery services!
Our no contact pickup window is just that, us opening our window to give out orders. We do look silly doing so (we know!) but it is quite convenient!
Two people in our small space (but plenty of macarons! - Playing “chef” on Halloween 2020, making the most of the mask situation!
As soon as Covid started a year and a half ago, we implemented a policy to only allow a few individuals at a time along with a heavy cleaning routine to keep staff and customers healthy.
We keep a positive attitude and give as much positive energy as possible to all our lovely customers during these challenging times.
To be continued…!
Thank you to all our customers for making this business a success and having helped with giving a living to many employees/community members along the way!