One of Amy Cardozo’s earliest memories of baking was learning to make sugar cookies at the age of seven.
“I was at school one day and a friend of mine had sugar cookies. I tasted them and knew I wanted to try and make them. So I went home, found a recipe and my mom gave me free reign of the kitchen,” she said.
Now, years later, Cardozo’s cooking and baking aspirations have culminated into Crumb’s Cakery Café — the newest addition to downtown Fernie’s lineup of small businesses.
Born out of Cardozo’s Sparwood basement three years ago when she was baking cakes from scratch for weddings and birthdays, the business gradually grew and was eventually spurred by a serendipitous walk on Fernie’s main street.
“I had been doing Crumbs Cakery for three years out of my basement and we had just begun to outgrow the space down there when one day I was walking in downtown Fernie and I saw that lease sign … After that, everything just fell into place,” she said.
Describing the business as a “pipe dream”, Cardozo has so far expanded her penchant for sweets into a savoury lunch menu filled with soups, sandwiches, salads and the Cakery’s signature hand-pie that was created from a family recipe.
“That was something I added to the menu to set the Cakery apart,” explained Cardozo. “It’s a family recipe and nobody else in town has that.”
In the kitchen, nothing that gets sold has come out of a can or box.
“Everything we do is made in-house from scratch,” said Cardozo. “The bread our sandwiches are on, the pastry for our hand-pies, the dressings on the salad. Literally everything is handmade from scratch.”
Cardozo credits her culinary family for her love for food.
“I grew up in a family of people who loved to cook. We always grew up with homemade meals and my parents were always showing us what they did in the kitchen,” she said.
Despite this, friends and acquaintances had told her that the food industry wasn’t a profitable one.
“I used to be told that you couldn’t make money in food so I went to college for business and computer technician courses, but something about food just kept bringing me back,” she said.
Since opening on May 6, Cardozo said that reception from customers and fellow business-owners alike has been wonderful.
Cardozo said, “It’s been awesome so far. We’ve had so much great feedback and it’s been busy. The support in Fernie has been incredible and it’s been a very humbling experience … I’ve had so many businesses coming to me and welcoming me here. I don’t feel that they’re competition at all. It just feels like one community. It feels good as a new business owner that you don’t have to feel worried, you feel comforted and supported. I think that’s probably why businesses here are so successful.”
In terms of expanding her newly-opened business, Cardozo said she looks forward to hearing suggestions from customers, particularly with adding vegetarian options to the menu.
“I’m totally welcome for people to make requests or suggestions so that I can adapt the menu to what customers want or need,” she said.
Crumbs Cakery is located at 562 2nd Ave in Fernie.