Voting Home / Specialty's Bakery and Cafe
In 1988 Craig Saxton and Dawn Sandnes decided to start their own business. At the time, Craig worked in foodservice management; Dawn, in retail management. Their goal was to create a successful foodservice operation serving the great food Dawn created in her home kitchen, make it fresh everyday, and serve it efficiently in a pleasant environment. An underlying goal was to create a successful business based on limited operating hours, allowing themselves and their future employees a more balanced work week.
The culmination of their quest was the opening of the first Specialty's Cafe & Bakery in San Francisco's financial district on March 15, 1988. Nestled within an 800 square foot retail space in a high-rise office complex, Craig and Dawn and five employees started baking and selling breads, pastries, cookies, handmade sandwiches and fresh salads. With limited capital, used equipment, no sign, while operating limited hours, by the end of the first year their annualized sales volume was in excess of $1 million.