If you’ve dreamed of sampling exceptional pastries, booking a flight to Paris or Vienna seems like a prerequisite. Sebastian Bakehouse, cofounded by Laura Kate Adelman and Randy Sebastian, lets you skip the airport for tasty pastries here at home.
For Adelman and Sebastian, baking is a way of life; both received formal training, but their passion was evident from a young age. The former is an Ohio native, born in Oxford. As a young girl, Adelman was determined to make a name for herself. She is now a professional pastry chef, excited about planting roots in Cincinnati. The latter grew up in Las Vegas and worked in his father’s bakery whenever school wasn’t in session. He naturally developed his skills, laying the groundwork for his future career.
The couple met in 2013, when they both worked at Horseshoe Casino (now Hard Rock Casino). Over the years, they moved to different cities across the country, working as pastry chefs for establishments such as Nobu in Las Vegas or Mr. Holmes Bakehouse in San Francisco. During their time in San Francisco, Sebastian rediscovered the joy of creating viennoiseries, or pastries made from bread dough and folded with layers of French butter. He wanted to ditch corporate life, and Adelman was on board. With plans to launch Sebastian Bakehouse, the duo moved back to Cincinnati in 2020.
Even the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t discourage Adelman and Sebastian. They began networking immediately, using social media to generate interest and create opportunities. Their first pop-up, in partnership with Dutch’s in Hyde Park, rapidly sold out.
“The following weekend, there were three or four inches of snow, so we didn’t think we’d sell anything,” Sebastian recalls. “We were freezing our asses off, but then we started hearing people talking and lining up an hour before we were scheduled to open.”
Sebastian Bakehouse continued to do pop-ups throughout 2021 and 2022, mostly in the Hyde Park area. On June 17, Adelman and Sebastian announced the opening of their first storefront. The new Wooster Pike space, previously home to the Groovy Gumball candy store, is only a short drive away in Mariemont.
“Eventually, we knew we needed our own space, but we wanted to stay loyal to all our customers in Hyde Park,” Adelman says. “We want them to know we appreciate them and aren’t abandoning them.”
Remodeling is currently underway, with pop-ups held at the unfinished storefront every Saturday and Sunday. Pop-ups run from 8 a.m. until all pastries are sold. Croissants, danishes, morning pastries, and other baked goods are all offered. The croissants in particular balance creativity with culinary discipline, which you can see in thevariety of sweet and savory flavors. From ube and coconut to spinach and feta, each combination is deliciously surprising. Plus, the dough is laminated to shiny perfection.
“Flavor-wise, it’s really off the cuff,” Adelman explains. “We make what we’re inspired by, and sometimes we have scratches we need to itch.”
Construction will continue for a few months, but when it wraps up, Adelman and Sebastian hope to open the store at least four days a week. The menu is already extensive, a testament to the cofounders’ 30-plus years of top-level culinary experience. The duo is committed to elevating the classics in an exquisitely eye-catching manner.
“Everybody knows what a croissant is,” Sebastian says. “But especially here in the Midwest, no one is truly showcasing the skill involved in making a world-class pastry product.”