bake - March 2018 - 24

life lessons
BY JOHN UNREIN

Few bakers have lived
through such unique
experiences as Pascal
Rigo has encountered.

Acclaimed baker Pascal Rigo remembers the crazy
days of his first baking experience in La La Land.
During the early 1990s, he was baking artisan breads
in Los Angeles where he started doing business with
fancy hotels, crafting stylish sourdough loaves and
delivering them in baskets. "Americans didn't consume
bread the way the way we do," he recalls, with a nod to
his home country of France. "I wasn't trying to replace.
I wanted to just add something else."
Rigo was making fabulous breads in assorted styles
and flavors, some with cheese or walnuts, and selling
to restaurants and hotels, until he decided to open his
first retail store in Southern California.
"I was so busy I would fall asleep at a traffic light
when it was red," he recalls. Soon he had opened
three retail stores but later sold out to a major chain.
"I sold the company to California Pizza Kitchen in
20 minutes," says Rigo, who was asked to stay on as
a consultant for months. "I stayed for six hours and
drove to San Francisco."
Fast forward to February 2018. Speaking at Europain
in Paris, the baker who brought artisan breads to
Trader Joe's and Starbucks discussed how he remains
as committed as ever to producing great-tasting
organic breads at affordable prices.
Rigo said he walked away from a partnership with
Starbucks in 2015 after helping the chain double its
annual food sales to $3 billion in three years. Then he
went on to introduce La Boulangarie retail bakeries in
San Francisco. But now his eyes have turned back to
his home country of France where he is embarking on
a new style of small artisan bakeries to the Bordeaux
region of France, where he grew up and first learned
his beloved trade.
According to reports, France has lost thousands
of bakeries over the past decade because of hard
boulangeries in small towns, hoping to fix the finances
and reopen the stores.
"Today, I feel that I am a full product of a French
education. I realized there was a real opportunity to

24 < MAR 2018 | bakemag.com

JOHN UNREIN

economic times. Now Rigo is seeking out closed


http://www.bakemag.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of bake - March 2018

http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2019_04_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_07_02
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2019_03_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2019_02_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2019_01_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_12_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_11_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_10_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_09_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_08_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_07_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_06_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_05_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_04_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_03_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_02_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2018_01_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_12_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_11_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_10_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_09_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_08_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_07_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_06_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_05_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_04_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_03_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_02_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2017_01_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_12_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_11_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_10_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_09_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_08_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_07_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_06_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_05_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_04_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_03_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_02_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2016_01_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_12_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_10_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_09_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_08_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_07_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_06_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_05_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2015_04_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2015_03_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2015_02_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2015_01_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_12_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_10_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_09_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_08_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_07_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_06_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_05_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_04_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_03_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_02_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2014_01_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_11_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_11_02
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_10_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_09_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_08_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_07_01
http://digital.bakemag.com/sosland/bake/2013_06_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_05_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_04_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_03_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_02_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2013_01_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_11_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_10_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_09_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_08_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_07_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_06_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_05_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_04_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_03_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_02_01
http://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/bake/2012_01_01
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com