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Local baker to open brick-and-mortar shop in Edge District

Veronica Brezina

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The interior of the restaurant space at 1113 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. Photo by Veronica Brezina.

Seminole resident Ariana Duksa never expected her at-home baking business to blossom into a full-fledged career. The ink has just dried on the lease for her first commercial space in St. Petersburg.

Duksa, owner of The Sourdough Co., will be opening her bakery in November at 1113 Central Ave., adjacent to Intermezzo Coffee and Cocktails.

Duksa started the business last year as she and her husband began a health-conscious journey of managing their gut health. Sourdough, the primary item Duksa bakes, has lower phytate levels compared to white and wheat bread, meaning it is more digestible and nutritious.

Once she started selling baked goods, word of mouth from neighbors traveled fast. It wasn’t long before Duksa found herself tweaking recipes and baking over 90 loaves of bread a week, in addition to English muffins, cookies and brownies. 

“I was serving customers out of my cottage myself. The first week, I sold out of products. I couldn’t hire employees due to hiring laws for home businesses, and the kitchen space limited me,” Duksa said. “Seminole is a big drive for our target customers in St. Pete. I went to Facebook and asked people what was available for lease.” 

Artisanal sourdough loafs made by The Sourdough Co. Facebook image.

Duksa eventually connected with prominent Edge District developer and landlord Jon Daou, who gave her a tour of the two-story, 4,764-square-foot space. It was last occupied by the Karma Juice Bar and Eatery, which relocated to a different site last year. 

“It is a huge space, but the kitchen is perfect,” Duksa said. “We like the layout and will be adding some personal touches.” 

Duksa said she may convert the loft area on the second floor into a co-working environment.

“We can use the space for events or co-working as there aren’t a lot of places where people can sit and work,” she said.

Duksa plans to hire 20 to 30 employees.

The restaurant space at 1113 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. GoogleMaps.

Her new 70-seat storefront will open every day from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

There will be a “bread wall” displaying the 15 different types of artisanal breads. 

The menu will include salads, sandwiches, soups in bread bowls, and prepackaged beverages from local businesses such as Mother Kombucha.

Duksa said she will be working with neighboring tenant Intermezzo, as The Sourdough Co. will not offer coffee. The two spaces are connected via shared French doors. 

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