Meet Our Bakers!

Our talented team of bakers share some of their favorite sources of inspiration and go-to recipes! Read on…

Jada Arrington

Baking since: 2017

Inspired by: the smile I’m able to put on someone’s face after they taste what I baked!

Hot baking trend: Botanical flowers

Kitchen smells like: Blueberry Zucchini Bread!

Mastered recipe / work in progress: coconut whipped topping / chocolate cake

Go-to baking book: Southern Living cookbooks

Natalia Dier

Baking since: 2015

Inspired by: Teresa Floyd and my mom, Pamela Vuong!

Favorite flavor combo: berries with a zest of orange or lemon

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Brioche Donuts and French Macaroons / Cake Pops

Tip for a beginning baker: Baking is a science, never give up if the recipe doesn’t turn out completely right your first time

Tip for an experienced baker: Challenge yourself by trying new recipes and flavor combos

Kitchen smells like: Cinnamon Rolls

Go-to baking book: Bake From Scratch Magazine

Natalia’s Cinnamon Rolls! 

Beth Hyzy

Baking since: 1990ish, but professionally since 2006

Inspired by: I love trying to get the best anything: the best chocolate cake, the most amazing banana bread, the ultimate cheesecake. Making the absolute most delicious thing someone has tasted before is what I live for! Everything inspires me to bake.

Favorite flavor combo: White chocolate and coffee

Favorite local dessert: BreadHive’s Salted Chocolate Chip Cookie

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Tahini in desserts / Fondant

Mastered recipe / work in progress: Cookies & cakes / Soggy dough on the bottom of fruit pies

Tip for a beginning baker: Read the recipe before you bake. Weigh and scale out all ingredients – get a kitchen scale!

Tip for an experienced baker: Try taking a favorite recipe and switching out a flavor to get something totally new! For example, regular oatmeal raisin can become Oatmeal White Chocolate Apricot! Get the recipe.

Kitchen smells like: Cookies!

Go-to baking book: Sweet: Desserts from London’s Ottolenghi – beautiful photography and recipes in metric measurements!

Beth’s White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies with toasted sugar and melted white chocolate!  Get the recipe here!

Lisa Paglicci

Baking since: 2012

Inspired by: Sylvia Winestock and her amazing wedding cakes – they’re stunning!

Favorite flavor combo: Peanut butter and chocolate, always!

Favorite local dessert: I love Lexi’s Peach Bread!

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Naked Cakes / Social media baking videos

Mastered recipe / work in progress: Chocolate chip cookies / Laminated Dough

Kitchen smells like: Coffee Semi-fredo and doughnuts… sometimes all I need are the doughnuts!  Get the recipe.

Go-to baking book: Bouchon Bakery – Thomas Keller

Lisa’s Coffee Semi-fredo & donuts!

Alexis Kerr

Baking since: 1997 – since I was 6!

Inspired by: Brown butter!  Also:

Joy the Baker – love her cozy homemade dessert/breakfast recipes

• Christina Tosi – her use of junk food and common grocery items is so innovative

• Christine McConnell – she makes really detailed Halloween-type gingerbread houses, cakes, etc. Tim Burton uses her for his movie premiers!

• Katherine Sabbath – Super colorful, flavorful cakes

• Adriano Zumbo – the Willy Wonka of dessert making in Australia

Favorite flavor combo: Bergamot, lavender, lemon

Favorite local dessert: Sticky Toffee Pudding at The Black Sheep, the Apple Cider Bread Plate at 5 Points Bakery & Toast Cafe!

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Mirror Glaze on cakes, Farm- to- table local fruits & wheat / Fondant

Mastered recipe / work in progress: Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies / French Macarons

Kitchen smells like: Brown Sugar Rosemary Cheesecake

Go-to baking book: Homemade Decadence – Joy the Baker

LaShara Jackson

Baking since: 2000

Inspired by: The Great British Baking Show

Favorite flavor combo: Chocolate desserts infused with coffee

Favorite local dessert: I love Lexi’s Vegan Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats! They’ve been my favorite for 9 years now, ever since my friend bought me one.

Mastered recipe / work in progress: Goat Cheese Cheesecake / French Macarons

Sarah Bahk

Baking since: 2015

Inspired by: Christina Tosi of Momofuku Milk Bar – I love her twists on classic recipes

Favorite local dessert: Lexi’s Gourmet Chocolate Mousse, BreadHive Sourdough Pretzel – find these in our bakery case, Sugar raised donuts from Duke’s Donuts

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Russian piping tips / rainbow bagels

Mastered recipe: Meringue

Tip for a beginning baker: Use a scale to weigh ingredients for the perfect cake (or cookie or pie) every time.

Tip for an experienced baker: After you scrape the seeds out of a vanilla bean, toss it in some sugar to make vanilla sugar! Try it on your next batch of crème brulee

Amanda Robertson-Baroni

Baking since: 1998

Inspired by: My great-grandmother, Emma – she was the baker at the Buffalo Airport. I hope I do her proud!

Favorite local dessert: Ellen Gerda’s Sticky Toffee Pudding at The Black Sheep

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Edible flowers, savory desserts / Tiny plates – give us more to share!

Mastered recipe / work in progress: Cheesecakes / fruit pie filling

Dave Burdick

Baking since: 1992

Kitchen smells like: Danish and sweet dough’s. The sticky Buns are about my favorite. Pies also and Breakfast items.

Inspired by: The people that inspired me the most where the people at Yeast West Bakery, where I learned to bake. It was the whole grain breads that got me hooked.

Hot baking trend / Blah baking trend: Whole Grains / Gluten free.

Favorite local dessert: Lexi’s Vegan Pumpkin Muffins

Favorite flavor combo: Of course the classics like cranberry orange, or strawberry Rhubarb. I guess my taste keep changing.

Go-to baking book: James Breads- Bread Book, The King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion, And my all time favorite, How To Bake – Nick Malgieri