Five years ago to the day we got our first look at what would eventually become Beaucoup Bakery at 2150 Fir Street. Then owner Jackie Kai Ellis sent these photos over of the building’s transformation. Its now lovely window frontage were realized by punching huge holes in a long-standing cinder block wall…
She was coming off 9 years as a designer, taking a sharp left turn career-wise to focus on baking and operating a cafe. In an email back then, she explained:
I started doing farmer’s markets on the weekend as a way to pay for my increasingly expensive baking hobby. I loved the markets for the 2 years I did them, specifically the community and the connection with customers who raved about the food. I then made the tough decision to shut down my firm and take a year off to attend pastry school in Paris. I took time to travel all of France, Italy, and some of Tanzania and DRC. My goal was to taste as much as I could. I knew if I wanted to make the best tasting desserts, I would have to know what that was. So I sought out the best pastry shops and restaurants and travelled there just to eat. 30 pounds later (not joking), I was back in Vancouver and had to decide what next. I knew I would always regret never trying to start a bakery, so I jumped!
Quite a lot of water has flowed under the bridge since. Beaucoup has been a delicious success and Jackie has flourished. She set up gastronomic tours of Paris, a scholarship program and has even written a memoir – “The Measure Of My Powers” – which is set for release next Spring. Dreams achieved, she sold Beaucoup Bakery a couple of months ago to employees, brother-sister duo of Jacky and Betty Hung.