Zeally Bay Sourdough
10 Sawmills Way, Torquay, Victoria, Australia
(03) 5264 7883
The family behind Zeally Bay Sourdough has had a passion for whole and organic food for more than three decades. Their newest outlet for this passion comes in the form of Zeally Bay Sourdough – a fully certified organic bakery in the heart of one of Victoria’s favourite seaside towns.
John and Jan Farnan are the brains behind this exciting artisan bakery. After 20 years running a successful cafe in Geelong – Wholefoods Kitchen – the couple relocated to Torquay to realise their long-held ambition of creating a bakery with hand-made traditional sourdough. The bakery is an extension of the ethical food philosophies that John and Jan developed during their years at Wholefoods Kitchen, but they instead focus their energy on producing healthy handmade organic bread.
Zeally Bay Sourdough is a family owned and operated business; John and Jan continue to run the bakery, while in 2013 one of their sons, Joel, left a career in architecture to help with the day-to-day operations of the bakery. Choosing Torquay means the family are able to enjoy a healthy relaxed coastal lifestyle: surfing, nurturing a vegie patch, and eating well.
John is the creative force behind the bakery – his upbringing on a farm allows him to approach the entire process with a ‘paddock to plate’ perspective. John and Jan’s values of authenticity, healthy living and caring for the environment are evident in every aspect of the bakery. They firmly believe that organic, and especially biodynamic, farming gives farmers and their animals a healthier environment and liberates more agricultural land from the unsustainable practises of conventional farming.
The dedicated and highly skilled bakers at Zeally Bay Sourdough bake fresh loaves on the sole of the oven every evening. Each loaf is fermented slowly using the family’s 35-year old leaven, the best quality stone-ground flour, salt and filtered water, meaning they are wholesome and free of preservatives – the way all bread once was!
This commitment to quality extends to the ingredients used in all of the specialty loaves, including cold-pressed olive oil, dried fruit, rolled golden linseed and nuts – all sourced directly from farmers who are certified organic or biodynamic. ZBS even sprouts wheat and rye seeds for particular loaves.
The small team of skilled bakers apply technical knowledge to their craft to create relatively light crusty breads with an elevated flavour and aroma enhanced by the use of the high quality ingredients. Making sourdough is a highly skilled operation and the bakers must manage a number of critical factors over the 30 hour fermentation process to ensure the creation of a truly premium loaf.
The bakery itself does not have a retail outlet but they maintain a daily supply to Victorian retailers, cafes and restaurants where the bread can be tried and purchased. John and Jan have also recently launched a line of certified organic muesli and granola, which can be shipped to customers all over Australia.
Zeally Bay Sourdough is essentially reimagining food. It is rare to have a food product of such quality backed up with a full paper trail guaranteeing provenance. The team aims to create sourdough loaves of an excellent quality that are healthy, full of flavour and better for the body and the environment than conventional breads.