Owner and baker of L’imprimerie, Gus Reckel, was originally a banker from Nancy, France. After working in London, he moved to America, took baking classes in New York, and opened his own bakery in between Bushwick and Ridgewood a few years ago. Located near our coliving homes in Ridgewood, L’imprimerie is the perfect nook to enjoy a coffee and pastry before taking on the city.
His spectacular breads and pastries are the talk of the town, so we decided to meet Gus and try the bread ourselves.
How did you get into baking, specifically French pastries, from a background of investment banking?
Bread found me! More seriously, I guess it was time for me to do something more meaningful.
What does “L’imprimerie” mean?
It means “printing shop,” as this is what the store had been for 60 years in the space right before we opened the bakery. The store still has a working printing machine by the window.
How did you decide to set up shop in Bushwick?
I had friends in the neighborhood, and it was more affordable than other neighborhoods. Even five years ago, Bushwick was already a great neighborhood and community.
You have bees on the roof to supply your store’s honey! What’s the importance of local produce to L’imprimerie?
Urban beekeeping has been around for a long time, and I knew it from my days in London. We need bees, so it is nice to support them when we can. Most of our ingredients are local: our dairy and eggs come from Ithaca and so do our grains.
What’s your favorite pastry to bake and to eat?
I really like a butter croissant. I enjoy the lamination process and the beauty and simplicity of the final result.
You have several famous pastries at L’imprimerie, like your croissants and your chocolate-chip cookies. Should newcomers go with those items or is there an unexpected item that you recommend?
Our Crousti (morning bun) or cinnamon rolls are also catching up to the croissants and chocolate-chip cookies. Our chocolate and beet is also a strong contender, so I would definitely recommend those to newcomers.
What are your other favorite local businesses in the neighborhood?
We are blessed to have so many great local places in the neighborhood. We really like Ops for pizzas — they’re almost as good as ours! Foster Sundry is a great spot to grab meat and cheese. Marie from Ops opened a liquor store just next to Cafe Escencia, so you can enjoy some great sourdough churros before shopping for some natural vines!
You can visit L’imprimerie any day of the week, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (9 p.m. on Fridays). Follow them on Instagram or take a look on their website to purchase any merchandise.
Thinking of moving to New York for the buttery bread, cinnamon buns, and some of the best chocolate chips in New York? Look no further. Take a free tour of our newest and beautiful homes in Ridgewood.