The Brucciani story has always been in the family...
From humble beginnings
In the mountains of Tuscany, north of Barga, is a tiny hamlet by the name of Brucciano from which the family takes its name. Almost 200 years ago some of my forefathers chose to leave the hard rural life and seek their fortunes abroad. They walked across Europe, initially settling in Scotland selling ice cream, coffee and treats, before making their way down the country to capitalise on the wealthy shipyards of Lancashire.
In 1937 Luigi Brucciani (pictured) left his father and brothers and came to Leicester, where the booming hosiery and shoe trades provided an excellent place to establish a new Italian coffee shop.
Setting up in Horsefair Street, Brucciani's was a friendly place to meet and enjoy fabulous coffee. Over the years the business grew to offer a whole selection of beautifully prepared drinks and foods.
After the war and the ending of rationing, expansion soon followed with the opening of our Fox Lane cafe and the acquisition of another old Leicester family firm, J S Winn, which brought with it several cafés and a bakery.
For the love of doUGH
In 1962, Luigi's son, Michael entered the business and over the years modernised and streamlined operations. Making full use of our new bakery for the production of our ice cream, we soon added breads, sandwiches and cakes to the list of products made and sold in house.
It was at this time that we introduced and established our now famous lemon splits which remain our best seller (and for good reason - you have to try one!) With the increasing demand for sandwiches and snacks our bakers were kept busy and our skilled workforce grew.
Realising our original and main café on Horsefair Street was at risk as the end of the original 50 year lease approached, Michael took a big gamble and built a new, larger Brucciani on Churchgate, opening in 1979.
During the 1980's the business flourished, but times were a changing.....
the third generation
In the early 1990's Horsefair Street had to close, a recession hit and we were forced to slim down to two cafés and our bakery. Michael's son Robert joined the business and hauled it into the modern era with investment in modern bakery kit.
Our bakery wholesale business was expanded, sandwich rounds set up and in 1998, as Robert left for the priesthood, his brother Tom joined in his stead. Recognising the unique value of our craft bakery as a means of continuing our passion for great, tasty and unique products, he has grown the wholesale and sandwich operations to reach out beyond the centre of Leicester.
Brucciani now boasts several, high profile awards for its artisan bakery. Producing breads, cakes and goodies to rival the finest patisseries and boulangeries in Paris or Milan, our core focus is keeping our cafés stocked with wonderful craft baked goods, satisfying hungry workers at their place of work and servicing restaurants, delicatessens with some of the finest breads in the world (sounds grand, but we have the awards to prove it ;)
Family has always been at the heart of our business. It is how we live and how we make a living. With that comes a care for the details; a desire to make things the best they can be. Our staff have been absolutely key to our success, often working for us for many years, sometimes for their whole careers.
For over 80 years we have been brewing coffee, serving customers, baking and making great food and working together. This long heritage gives us a less hurried view of life and leads us to value much more than pounds, shillings (yes, we remember those!) & pence.