Dandy opened their doors eight years ago, back in August 2014, when after nine years living in Sydney, Jamie Hooker and his partner, at the time, headed back to Jersey to be closer to family.
With years of experience in high end customer service, sustainability and hospitality under his belt the plan was to bring a taste of the Sydney coffee culture he’d grown to love to Jersey. Wrapping up all of the skills he’d gained in his previous roles, the dream was to open somewhere that would offer customers a higher level of personal service and excellent produce in what seemed like a fairly crowded market.
This ambition became a reality in the form of their shop on Conway Street, the tiny OG Dandy that we’ve all grown to know and love, if you’ve not been lookout for their distinctive black canopy and bold gold DANDY print, oh and the window full of tantalisingly tasty treats which is almost impossible to pass without a moment to pause and drool .
Within a few months of opening Jamie’s then partner opted to go back to Oz. Worry not though, this tale doesn’t have a sad ending, in fact it’s the start of an even bigger love story as his departure opened the doors to both Dan Houzé and Lucy Davis coming in and to join the team ‘and it’s been the three of us ever since!’
Over the last eight years it’s safe to say that Dandy has evolved significantly. They opened their second location in Colomberie in January 2018 ‘with more space the second shop allowed us to scratch a bit of an itch, we were able to offer more brunch and sit down lunch options, but this was short lived as the challenges of Covid pushed us to adapt and, having never previously had any real downtime, the lockdown allowed us to focus on developing the bakery side of the business which is now growing at a rate of knots. We also introduced Saturday brunch home deliveries, something that still proves so popular’.
In 2021 they were presented with an opportunity to buy a third location (also in Colomberie). ‘The biggest change for us was the ability to quadruple the size of our bakery kitchen which allowed us to really grow our wholesale and corporate catering offering and we feel so privileged to be supplying to some of our favourite places. The list is growing all the time but currently includes Relish, La Bouche, The Watchmaker, Upstairs at Anley Street and Sangria. You can also buy our loaves of sourdough directly from either of our shops and also order it from Fungi Delecti, or on Saturday’s from Seahorse Cafe in Gorey Or Midland Stores. There are few more exciting businesses we’re working with too, it’s amazing to see how things are developing.’
The bakery side of Dandy sees a team of legendary bakers, including stalwart Matt Gordon and Lukasz Aniol, creating the most delicious array of goodies six days a week. What started life as the team wanting to produce enough sourdough for the shop, with the odd spare loaf that was like winning the lottery if you were lucky enough to get your hands on it, has now become a scratch bakery that operates around the clock, with the team working at all hours of the day to satisfy growing demand.
Dandy isn’t just about great coffee and sourdough loaves that you’ll want to eat in one sitting (it’s that good) you’ll also be blown away by the ever growing array of pastries, cakes and ready to go sandwiches that they’re creating every day and then there’s the doughnuts… they’re just available on Saturdays at their Colomberie shop (after 10am) and if you’ve not tried one yet then add it to your must try list. Don’t be fooled by their unassuming appearance which may mean they look similar to ‘other’ doughnuts they are in fact filled to the brim with the most delicious fillings, we’re talking house made raspberry jam, pina colada inspired rum and lime spiked custard and the richest chocolate ganache that will leave you wanting to buy a second before you’ve even finished the first. Or why not get yourself a slab of the infamous Dandy banana bread, toasted and slathered in butter, it’s been on the menu since day one and never fails to raise a smile.
From day one, Dandy was created with a goal to offer something special. ‘We have such a fantastic team of really skilled people and we also have such amazing customers that continue to support us in everything we do.’
Here at Gallery we’re proud to say we’ve been there since their doors opened and, you may be able to tell, remain firm fans, so from all of us congratulations on getting this far and here’s to the next eight years and beyond!