Two years after launching her dessert bakery, Jessica Duggan is taking her pies, tarts, cinnamon rolls and crumble bars from farmers markets to a full-service dessert bakery in a community that could use one.
Duggan, who got her start at the Puyallup Farmers Market in 2014, will open Tattered Apron Bakery in South Hill this summer in the storefront that previously housed Great Harvest Bread Co. on Meridian Avenue East.
Besides Epic Doughnuts, there are no independently owned dessert bakeries in South Hill (or nearby Graham or Sumner).
She hopes to open in early July, if construction goes as planned.
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Duggan quit her job at a doctor’s office to start her bakery, a lifelong dream. She’s been obsessed with baking since digging into her grandmother’s famous lava cakes. In fact, she says, her baking resembles her grandmother’s style — minimally fussed-over desserts using whole ingredients, including fresh, seasonal fruit, cane sugar and butter, no substitutes.
“We don’t put a lot of sugar in our fruit pies,” said Duggan. “We try really hard to keep things as natural as possible.”
Using that mantra, Duggan grew her bakery slowly, selling at the Puyallup Farmers Market in 2014 and 2015 and expanding to the Tacoma Broadway Farmers Market in 2015. She started selling to Puyallup businesses, such as Arista and Sparks Deli. She’s been operating her bakery out of a rented commercial kitchen space.
As she works on opening her own bakery, she’ll continue selling at the Tacoma and Puyallup farmers markets this season and plans to sell at the Orting Farmers Market, which opens June 10.
The South Hill Tattered Apron Bakery will have seating for about a dozen and will feature Duggan’s specialties: Pies, cookies, scones, cinnamon rolls, muffins, cheesecake, croissants and a few styles of bread.
During berry season, she’ll focus on berry pies, including her popular marionberry pie, as well as strawberry-rhubarb, cherry, apple and pecan. She’ll bake more elaborate flavors, including her cherry-almond-amaretto pie and her peach pie with a pecan crust and bourbon glaze.
Rounding out the bakery display case will be cinnamon rolls, a selection of cheesecake, and savory and sweet croissants.
She’ll focus on selling pie by the slice, with whole pies available for pre-order. The same will be true for cakes. She’ll have a daily selection of cake by the slice, with the intention of baking pre-ordered custom cakes for parties and weddings.
She’ll stock cinnamon rolls daily, as well as a few types of scones. Her specialties are blueberry-lemon, apple maple bacon, raspberry-lemon, lemon poppy seed, orange cranberry and a spin on a traditional raspberry jam-filled fair scone. She makes savory scones, such as caramelized onion and cheddar rosemary.
Her cookie selection will include jumbo-sized chocolate chip, snickerdoodle, peanut butter and frosted sugar cookies. Muffins will include blueberry, chocolate chunk, lemon poppy seed and bran.
Rounding out the bakery display case will be a selection of cheesecake, and savory and sweet croissants. She described the occasional offering of breads, such as a French cottage loaf and cinnamon raisin bread. She’ll serve drip coffee.
Eventually, she hopes to expand to serving panini sandwiches and salads, but initially will focus on desserts. She intends to operate the bakery Tuesdays-Sundays, with hours approximately 6 a.m.-4 p.m.