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Vosen Bakery History

Vosen’s Bread Paradise, Inc. was founded in April 1997 by Markus Vosen and his wife Silvia.

They opened their doors on April 7th and presented Salt Lake City with the most authentic German bakery goods this city had ever seen. One of the questions they were asked most frequently was : “Why Salt Lake City ?”

To answer this, we have to go back quite a bit. Let’s start with Markus.

After completing his apprenticeship as a baker (1985-1987) and graduating best of his class, the 1968 born worked in several bakeries throughout Germany, when he decided to go to Master school and complete his education with a Masters degree in baking. With passing the (very tough) exams at the end of two long years (1990-1992) of school and work, he got his “Meisterbrief”, which allows him to carry the title as “Certified Master Baker”. Regulations in Germany are so strict, that without a “Meisterbrief” no one is allowed to open their own business.

Once this goal was achieved, he moved on to gather even more experience by working in five more bakeries, most of them in southern Germany. Then out of the blue, he decided to take a job offered by Cunard Cruise Line. His first assignment was the Five-Star-Plus luxury cruise ship M/S Royal Viking Sun, a ship so high class, that it was rated “Best cruise ship” by the Berlitz guide to cruising for seven consecutive years.

He stayed there for 3 contracts of 6 months each, until the Royal Viking Sun ran on a reef in the Red Sea in April 1996. He left for vacation and after about 3 months he was assigned to the M/V Sea Goddess II.

This was, where he met his wife to be, Silvia. Silvia, a graduate from Bad Gleichenberg Hotel School (1979-1982), was tired of her everyday life after working for seven years in her parents’ restaurant in Graz, Austria. Taking an offer from Cunard, she worked her way up from cabin stewardess on the Sea Goddess II, to cashier on the M/S Vistafjord, to Chief Purser on Sea Goddess I and II.

Seven years had passed since her first assignment in 1989, when a long time passenger from Salt Lake City offered her a job in a travel agency. She was willing to take it, but wanted to do one more contract on the ship. It was that contract during which she met Markus. It took them two months to become a couple and three weeks to decide on getting married.

Markus was thinking about opening his own bakery in the USA and when he learned that Silvia was going to Salt Lake City, his location was chosen. So, when his contract on the ship ended, he went to Salt Lake City, checked the place out and told Silvia two weeks later, that the first steps for their future were done.

Back in Germany, Markus bought all the machines and equipment, refurbished the used ones and organized the transport to Salt Lake City. With the 40 ft container on its way across the Atlantic, Markus took a plane to Utah and started the huge renovation of the old building that he had chosen for the location of the bakery. His father joined him after a week and together they renovated pretty much everything within four weeks, including tiling the entire bakery.

Silvia joined Markus shortly after the container arrived and the equipment was installed. Besides transforming the apartment on the second floor from empty rooms into a home, they gave the final touch to the bakery.

Then, April 7th 1997, was the big day : they opened for business for the very first time !!! Since then, more than many years have gone by, filled with everything that life throws at you : Laughter and tears, disappointment and victory, loss and success. The bakery has evolved as Vosen’s gained more customers, both retail and wholesale. Since Day 1, the initial line of products has been extended with more than twenty new items. New machines and equipment were added as well as new employees.

In 2004, Markus and his family had to return to Europe and sold the business to David and Michelle Porter who moved to Utah in 1992. They have owned several restaurants in Utah and had a wholesale bakery operation specializing in bagels and pretzels. We continue to pass along the old world recipe to exact standards passed along from Markus.

Now, Vosen’s Bread Paradise has established itself as THE German bakery in Utah. But even though the workload has increased and counter help take care of the customers (at the beginning it was only Silvia and Markus), they still stick to the same superb quality, the same caring customer service, the same old-world attitude of being “the bakery with the personal touch”.