Being at the right place, at the right time—it’s not only us who feel this way when entering Kenyérke’s door in Budapest’s Wekerletelep, but the founders of the brand new bakery too, when they could finally make their old dream smelling like a bread come true.
When I used to live in Wekerletelep, I always smiled when I crossed Zalaegerszeg Street—as a person born in Zalaegerszeg, it felt nice to have a home here, too. Of course this was not the only thing that made the area loveable: the warm and friendly atmosphere the locals create as well as the small places offering special goods also contribute to this quality greatly. One thing was missing though—Wekerle needed a true sourdough bakery and Kenyérke has been filling this role successfully since March.
Their story is not without twists and turns: for one, the owners, Géza Minik and his wife, Johanna Minik-Tiszttartó, were not raised in the world of gastronomy. The former used to be the commercial director of Hungarian shoe brand Tisza Cipő and was in charge of the ever-expanding store network after years of playing handball on a professional level, while Johanna has traveled the world thanks to the fashion industry and worked for various media platforms subsequently. Their encounter did not only result in love, a family and a shared home in Wekerle, but also the desire to have a place that is just like a little French boulangerie (bakery)—where they greet regulars with love, where everything is cozy and loveable and where every bite is a feast.
It must have been thanks to fate that they managed to find the owner of a corner shop abandoned for decades—things suddenly sped up and the details of the photos collected as inspiration previously started to come to life. It was important to have a clean and friendly interior, to which the vintage furnishing renovated by Loft-Industries and the wall cladding of AC Design also contributes greatly. As Géza is from Hódmezővásárhely originally, a lot of memories and friends tie him to the city, which manifests on several points of the interior: sometimes in the furniture, while at other times in the product selection. Their assortment is already quite diverse, because they did not start baking the breads themselves (the size of the store wouldn’t make it possible to have their own workshop anyway), instead, they set the goal of bringing the products of the best bakeries to the neighborhood. As a result, we can find crunchy sourdough breads, baguettes and ciabattas, as well as sticky cocoa rolls, cottage cheese bundles evoking the flavors of childhood and Belgian chocolate bites in their shop. From time to time, their assortment also includes leavened dough products, such as the thousand-flavored brioches or butter crescents, but the fans of puff pastry can also find perfect breakfast snacks in both sweet and savory versions. The store also functions as a small deli filled with the products of several Hungarian producers, including jams, chutneys and syrups from Befőzde in Hódmezővásárhely or Boppe milk manufactory, among many others.
This loveable simplicity is what makes Kenyérke a place one can come home to. Géza and Johanna are also big fans of the serenity of the countryside, so the evocation of Provence’s atmosphere was a deliberate decision. The ingredients should be of high quality, the products fresh and tasty, and the atmosphere homey—this is all what happiness takes, both in and outside of Wekerle.
Photos: Nóri Puskás