This was the year in which Yuri Gagarin became the first man to journey into outer space, the four hairy guys from Liverpool had their first gig and the people of Zagreb celebrated winning the Academy Award for the best Animated Feature. It was a beginning to many great stories and one of them was also the story of warm, crispy bread which would become indispensable on the tables of people of Zagreb for more than 50 years thanks to family Mikelec. This was the story about Bakery Dubravica.
The first delivery vehicle (van) was obtained. Until then bread was transported in baskets in horse carts.
The first stand mixer replaced hand kneading in wooden kneading-troughs.
The bakery was expanding and new, bigger ovens were set.
The first line for white and half-white bread began operating.
A silo for storing and dosing flour was built.
The range of products increased by pasta production.
The first private store was open on Zaprešić market.
A new production plant, one of the more contemporary ones in Europe, started operating.
Dubravica arrives at the very heart of Zagreb - a store opens in Gajeva street, near the popular Špica.
In order to know where you are headed, you need to know where you came from. We went a long way from a small family business to a contemporary company known for successfully linking tradition with contemporary baking trends. Everything that we have accomplished and that we yet have to accomplish, is thanks to our guiding principle - deep and true passion for baking.
Years we spent with You
Our bread and pastry are made according to the authenticated recipe with local ingredients and preparation that includes a lot of effort and manual work of our diligent bakers. In addition to that, we also use the traditional fired clay ovens which give our products a unique taste which we all remember from our childhood. And only by respecting the knowledge and experience of the former generations we can make bread that would make our ancestors proud.
Carefully chosen types of flour ground in domestic mills, water refined by a special method of whirling in order to gain the properties of natural spring water, carefully cultivated natural starters and sourdoughs and a slight touch of high-quality modern technology. Only the best ingredients and methods are good enough for bread from Dubravica, bread crowned by quality.
Even today, we still cherish the recipes and methods of bread baking which our founder Franjo Mikelec conceived more than 50 years ago and we constantly upgrade them according to new knowledge on nutrition and customer demand. In a specially arranged small bakery we knead and bake samples of bread and pastry in order to improve some of the existing products or to develop completely new ones. This is how we came to produce our unique and innovative products such as whole grain delicacy bread, bacon rolls, hot sandwiches...
While preparing dough we use top-quality flour which is freshly ground in local mills and which matures for several weeks in special silos. Immediately before adding it into the mixing, water goes through a special procedure of whirling in order for it to gain the properties of natural spring water. Such water stimulates the effects of yeast which contributes to the richness of flavour in dough and to a better binding of water and flour. This results in longer freshness of bread.
Besides the main ingredients for bread - flour, water and salt - to nearly all of out mixings we add one of dozen types of swelling masses, starters or sourdoughs which we daily cultivate. Bread produced with this indirect method, with the addition of yeast starter, is distinguished by a better flavour and freshness, whereas, the addition of sourdough enables easier digestibility of bread and better efficiency of important minerals and proteins and decreases glycaemic index of bread and prolongs its durability.
Instead of the usual industrial procedure in which fermentation in bulk lasts for about 20 minutes, in Dubravica we prefer the so called long rise method with a very small share of yeast which lasts a lot longer - even to four hours. But, it is worth the wait. This fermentation method gives us excellent bread with a fine, flavoury and yielding medium part.
After fermentation dough is divided into smaller parts, depending on the type of bread, and then it is professionally formed by our experienced skilled bakers. Every bread goes several times through their diligent hands and thanks to that magic touch, it becomes a real little master-piece of baker's trade.
The standard final fermentation of bread and pastry lasts for about an hour, but we ferment some types of bread even up to 12 hours in special cooling chambers, whereas all pastry stands at least through 24 hours before baking. This way bread and pastry can develop a full taste, flavour and rich texture. Just as in long fermented high-quality cheese, in our bread's medium part there are bigger and irregular holes which emerge during the slow and long-lasting gas accumulation in the pores of the dough, and they represent a guarantee of high-quality gourmet experience.
After fermentation, the formed and risen bread is ready for baking. It is baked in a special oven, right on the fireclay without the additional air flow. This type of oven is the most similar to the traditional baker's wood oven and it gives perfect crispy crust to the bread, as well as the recognizable domestic taste. We deliver freshly baked bread three times a day to our shops, and we bake pastry and fine pastry in the very shops during the whole day in order for them to always be appealingly hot for our customers.