The aromatic scent of fresh bread and cheese wafts through the air as ten cooks at the Brown Bread Bakery in South Delhi’s Sultanpur hastily prepare pretzels, German crust bread, and an array of cheeses. Their masterpieces are destined for the German and Italian embassies, along with the hotels hosting delegates from these nations during the G20 Summit.
Though the bakery has a history of serving the German, Italian, and Swiss embassies and their guests in New Delhi since its establishment in 2010, it’s possibly the busiest they’ve ever been.
Michael Schmid, the owner who hails from a lineage of German bakers, revealed that the venture began out of his own longing for traditional German foods in Delhi. “I missed German bread, coffee, and cheese,” Schmid says. Consequently, he initiated a bakery with a café in Paharganj in 2010. The German Embassy was the first to approach them, and eventually, Swiss and Italian embassies joined their clientele.
Schmid, a fourth-generation baker, shared his vision of bringing the best pretzels from South Germany to India. Despite the setback caused by the pandemic that led to the closure of his Paharganj outlet, the Sultanpur bakery has been overwhelmed with orders, diversifying their menu from just bread and cheese to salads and cheese-nut platters.
Dev N Acharaya, the bakery’s manager, mentioned the growing demand due to the G20 Summit. Their classic German breads, inherited from Schmid’s family recipes, distinctively differ from Indian breads in density and shelf life. Arif, one of the cooks, added that they even grind their own wheat into flour for their pretzels.
For their Italian clientele, the bakery is producing Focaccia bread, bread sticks, and the flavorful asiago cheese. Quality and authenticity are paramount since the dignitaries have specific taste preferences.
Naresh Chettri, the chief of production and head chef, spoke about their special rendition of croissants and pain au chocolat, whimsically named “Austrian croissants” by the staff. The bakery is also gearing up to serve its freshly baked products at embassy offices in Delhi during the weekend, with a designated stall to showcase their items.
As the G20 Summit progresses, the Brown Bread Bakery is bound to keep impressing palates and leaving a lasting mark on its guests.