One hundred years of bread in Nerja

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Antonio Ramírez, of the fourth generation, in the bakery. / Eugenio Cabezas

Ramírez bakery celebrates 100 years, with the fourth generation at the head of a company that seeks to reinvent itself while preserving its traditions

The Ramirez bakery is an institution in Nerja. Founded in 1921, it is still located in the same place where they started to bake the bread that the neighbors brought to their ovens. The founders were Francisco Ramirez and Eloisa Navas, who owned one of the few flour mills that existed at the time in the province’s easternmost coastal town.

A century later, two of their great-grandchildren, Antonio and María José Ramírez, run the business.

Although they still try to maintain the essence of traditional commerce, both have adapted to the new times, with innovations such as the grain, spelled and rye breads and the colorful breads they make. by adding different edible colors. “The essence is always the same, the secret is there”, he assures us, lifting the cloth which covers an enormous piece of leaven, “the origin of everything”. “You won’t see that in supermarket bakeries, the bread is frozen over there, who knows what they’re adding,” says Antonio.

Since the age of 19, he has lived “like an owl”. “I sleep from two to eight in the afternoon, work begins at nine in the evening and we are there until six in the morning, kneading and baking bread every day of the year, except Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, where we rest. , says this baker from Nerja.

He goes on to explain that 70 percent of his business is based on serving the local hospitality industry. “With the pandemic, we have had a very bad time, but the situation is already improving a little,” he admits.

On average, 1,500 breads and around 5,000 rolls are made daily, with around 400 kilos of flour coming from Granada and Seville. “It depends a lot on the season, in summer we work more,” he said.

In addition to the different types and forms of bread, on the arrival of the Día de San Juan, celebrated on June 24, they also prepare the traditional “tortas de aceite”. “We don’t do anything else, just that and the bread,” he explains. “A loaf of our bread costs one euro and it is true that in supermarkets or en primeur you can find two for that price, but the flavor is not the same, far from it”, he says.

“Good service and quality are our secret weapons”, sums up Ramírez, who is “very proud” of the “great team we have”, made up of six employees. “My grandmother, Julia López, is 101 years old and always comes to see us at work, it is with great pride that we maintain this traditional bakery after a hundred years,” says Ramírez. Not long ago, the Association of Neighbors of Las Protegidas, near the bakery on San Miguel Street, paid homage to them for this first century of their existence.

To pass the baton

“My children are still young, the boy is 16 and the girl is 13, I do not know if they will want to devote themselves to this profession in the future, but personally I would not like it, it is a profession. very demanding work, ”he admits.

A few meters from the bakery, some of her cousins ​​are in charge of the Ramirez boutique, founded in 1965, and of which SUR in the English brother’s newspaper, Diario SUR, reported in 2015, when she was celebrating her first half a century of traditional sales. bread and pastries, for more than five decades in Nerja.


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