Since the end of her time in high school, 22-year-old Jillian Lassaline has dreamed of running her own bakery.
Following two years of college and a pandemic, her plans came to fruition with the opening of Jillian’s Bakery in the plaza at 400 Laclie St. in late June.
The bakery will hold its grand-opening event Friday, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and cookie giveaway for the first 50 customers.
The current mainstays on Lassaline’s menu include sourdough bread, croissants, and scones, but new items will consistently be brought into rotation, she said.
“I change up what I have every single week. I like getting feedback from customers so that I know what to keep bringing back,” Lassaline told OrilliaMatters.
“My scones, my croissants, and my sourdough bread are my biggest sellers, so I like to have them all the time, but everything else, I like to have a bit of a rotation just so I don’t get bored and so that my customers don’t get bored of what I have.”
Lassaline’s commitment to bringing freshly baked goods to her display has her working odd hours.
She begins baking at midnight, and then runs her store between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
“Everything comes in here same day, super fresh,” she said.
Lassaline originally got inspired to pursue a career in baking through an extracurricular course with Georgian College at the end of her high school studies.
Following graduation from George Brown College’s baking and pastry program, she began building her customer base through the Orillia Fairgrounds Farmers’ Market.
“I’ve been working my way towards it,” she said. “I was working my booth out at Orillia Fairgrounds Farmers’ Market. I have a booth there every Saturday and, for the last few years, I was also working at the Gravenhurst Farmers’ Market, as well.”
So far, Lassaline’s work in the area has led to good business.
“It’s been great. Again, it’s just been two weeks, but I’ve had lots of people who have known me from before I opened that have come to show their support, and I’ve had lots of new people from the area that just popped in because they saw my ‘open’ sign,” she said.