Amazing, Artisanal, Tasty Private Brand from NYC

Sullivan Street Bakery makes some of the best bread in New York City. With almost two decades under its belt, it’s a venerable institution in the city’s culinary circles. Jim Lahey, the man behind the ovens, is expanding the bakery’s product offerings to include a line of Private Brand products. Jim originally planned to spend his life as a sculptor. His passion for art and natural beauty took him to Italy, where he found a new medium for that sculptor’s urge: bread. Inspired by the bakers of Tuscany and Rome, he returned to New York City determined that the “peasant” bread of the Italian countryside could find a home in America.

In 1994, he started Sullivan St Bakery in Soho, with little more than the wild yeast he cultivated by hand in Italy, and a passion for bringing the exquisite, handcrafted breads of Italy to the American table.

In October 2000, the new headquarters for Sullivan St Bakery was opened on West 47th Street in Hell’s Kitchen. As its reputation spread, the bakery grew into a destination for not just bread but also savory Roman-style pizzas, rustic Italian pastries and cookies.

Today, over 340 of New York’s finest restaurants, such as Jean Georges (the best prix fix lunch in NYC, with an amazing bread service), The Four Seasons, Gramercy Tavern and are showcases for the bakery’s remarkable bread. Visitors to the bakery’s new home in Hell’s Kitchen come from everywhere to try Jim Lahey’s latest creations, including multigrain breads, seasonal tarts and pastries, and mouthwatering sandwiches.

Jim Lahey’s simple, rustic bread has hit on something important: Bread is more than bread. It reaches all the way from the belly to the soul. In November of 2006, Lahey’s no-knead method drew the attention of “The Minimalist” columnist Mark Bittman. His articles about it in the New York Times sparked a worldwide home baking revolution.

Lahey’s story and the brand that has evolved out of it captures what brand builders around the world in their own clichéd way strive to be – authentic. He is the real deal and his foray into Private Brand products reflects exactly that. The packaging was designed by Hyperakt in partnership with creative director Greg Crossley with the goal of extending the visual language of the bakery across all new and future products.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.