The verb “cradle” means to “hold gently and protectively” which we feel suits us down to a tee. But the idea for our name actually came from the idiom “cradle-to-cradle”, which comes from the original, and better known “cradle-to-the-grave”. By changing “grave” to “cradle”, it’s implying that we have a responsibility beyond our own existence, to focus on circular, sustainable solutions.
I’ve been baking bread professionally since 2008 when I traded in my day job and the many years I’d dedicated to becoming an artist, for a life of long night shifts in a bakery. From the first time I put my hands in the dough, I knew it was what I was meant to do. It’s the best job in the world, no doubt.
Christophe and I make a great team. At ‘aux deux épis’, we’ve always worked together to create the best product we can without compromising. That’s why we sleep well at night! We share the same passion for great food and our inspiring community of friends, farmers and producers in France lead us on a path to work towards a more compassionate and sustainable future for our business. A lot of thought and planning has gone into CRADLE, we’re so proud of it, and we can’t wait to share it.
I’ve had long and fruitful 20+ year career in cooking. My uncle was a top chef in the Army, so I’d wanted to be a chef for as long as I can remember. I was lucky enough to be born, raised and trained in the gastronomic holy-land of France, Burgundy. This gave me the tools I needed to travel the world working is some of the best restaurants in incredible locations. As I’d spent most of my time in the pastry section, when I met Holly, it made total sense for us to join our skills and open a bakery together in France. It’s been a great journey, and now we’re so excited to move on to our next adventure and open CRADLE. It’s a project that’s really close to my heart. It feels like its all been working up to this
Our bakery in France –
“Aux Deux Epis”
From 2009 – 2015, we ran our own certified organic bakery in a small village in the rural Loire Forez region of France.
When we bought it, it was in real mess and business was low. The baker we bought it from was using cheap flours, tons of additives and chemicals in his bread and buying in most of his pastries frozen.
We took on the challenge and turned the business around, switching to local and organic producers and traditional methods. After a few months trading only in the village, we started to sell our produce on some local markets and soon after we were supplying organic co-operatives, schools and colleges. Business was good.
Our closest friends were the farmers and producers we worked with, and their produce was the best you could find. But seeing calves separated from their mothers for the first time so we could get our milk, and the hundreds of hens sent for slaughter every year when their egg production became too low, planted a seed in our minds and we began to reconsider the part we played. The more we looked into it, the more we came to realise that not only did this feel morally wrong, but it was unsustainable, unhealthy and polluting the planet on a massive scale.
And so, our empowering journey began to develop a new plant-based repertoire and relocate to the UK for a fresh start.