A blossoming family business with love

The latest addition to Derry’s blossoming cafe culture can claim their menu is prepared and served with more love and care than any other.

The recently opened Cherry Blossom Bakery in Aras Colmcille, Long Tower Church, is the result of Derry mammy, Geraldine Kelly, teaching her sons to bake from an early age.

Brothers Gareth and Shawn, with the aid of big sister, Donna and Gareth’s wife Claire, serve an array of traditional lunches with an exquisite twist, fine pastries, devilishly rich cakes, delicious coffees and sausage rolls which, simply put, are up there with the best in Derry.

Proprietor Gareth Kelly, said, “Our main aim is to create a family atmosphere. We want the customers to come and relax in a nice space and ambiance just outside of the hustle and bustle of the city centre. I believe we have created a welcoming, stress free environment.”

The fact the cafe is set in the sedate grounds of one of the nicest churches in Derry certainly helps.

Gareth clearly takes immense pride in his food, but also, rightly, in how he came to open the business. “My brother and I started baking and selling cup cakes via Facebook. Two years ago I bought a Mercedes bus thinking, rather naively, that I would be opening a world beater but we scaled back and everything grew organically. “I’m really proud to be baking for a living. It takes me back to my childhood standing in the kitchen baking with my mother.”

Gareth continued: “As the grandchildren joined the Kelly ranks, my siblings and I decided, as we were spending less and less time together, we should collaborate on a family project. Baking was the obvious activity. Not only did we quickly gather momentum, we revitalised the friendships between us, not that it was ever anything less than strong but working together has really brought our family even closer together.

“Everything we send out of the kitchen stems from our mother’s love for food, for us and each other.”

Yet the baker believes it is not this which sets his business apart but the value Cherry Blossom offer. “I genuinely think price is what sets our cafe apart. I understand the local economy, we’re not out to become millionaires by this time next year. We are about providing top quality, affordable, homemade products that have been prepared by people who love what they do and do what they love.”

Cherry Blossom Bakery opens at St Columba Heritage Centre, Aras Cholmcille, 59-61 Long Tower Street Tuesday – Friday 9-5 hot food served 12-3, Saturday 10-5, lunches served 12-3 and Sunday 10-2pm.

Contact Cherry Blossom Bakery via Facebook.cherry

blossombakery or phone Gareth on 07711 064003.