Deising's Bakery in Kingston: A Sweet Way to Give Back to the Community
An ordinary day at Deising's Bakery looks something like this: Call in the monthly order for 55,000 pounds of flour, oversee 95 employees, custom-decorate 80 cakes, and answer at least a dozen calls requesting food donations!
Even with all this action, Deising’s still has time to bake the food orders listed in their daily Donation Calendar.
All of this has kept the Deising family hopping for 52 years.
“Our mission has always been to produce high quality bakery goods at a fair price, provide great customer service, and give back to our community,” said Eric Deising, President of the bakery since 1999.
Eric Deising’s parents, Uwe and Ingrid, immigrants from Hamburg, Germany, both found their way to Long Island.
Uwe’s passion was always baking, and he was the youngest person to pass the Master Baker test in Germany.
“Our father came to America with the dream of showcasing his talents to an American audience,” said Eric.
Ingrid had her own dream of opening up a small cafe. They first met on a double-date which took a surprise twist when Ingrid decided she might like her friend’s date a little bit more than her own, and the rest is history!
After their marriage Uwe worked in a few different bakeries, until one day he spotted an ad in the New York Times. There was a bakery for sale in upstate New York.
He had never been to upstate NY and had never heard of Kingston. “Mom and dad visited the area and immediately fell in love with Ulster County. The mountains, river, and valley reminded them of Germany, and they immediately bought Ketterer's Bakery on Broadway,” said Eric.
They operated the bakery as Ketterer's Bakery until 1980 before changing the name to Deising's. After purchasing their second location that same year, Ingrid realized her dream of opening a cafe. With her business knowledge and excellent cooking abilities, her menu became so popular that they needed to expand again.
They purchased the two adjacent buildings to expand the restaurant and begin a catering business. Today Deising's is a well known meeting place for the social and business communities of the Hudson Valley.
Over the years Deising's has won numerous awards including "Best Breakfast in the Hudson Valley" and "Best Cookies of the Hudson Valley", but their proudest moment came when they were named "Best Retail Bakery in America"!
On average the bakery receives a dozen calls per day requesting food donations, so they have created an online donation form.
Priority is given to Kingston residents and businesses.
"We can’t give to everyone and my first obligation is to my employees, but whenever we assign a cap to our donation amount, we still go way over,” said Eric.
One local program that has special significance to the Deising family is the Center for Spectrum Services which helps people all across the autism spectrum.
Eric’s nephew graduated from the school, and the bakery has supported their programs for many years.
When the bakery decided to have a celebration to commemorate the bakery’s 50th Anniversary, they chose to donate the proceeds to the Center.
The Deising family asked their business associates and vendors to purchase a 12 inch cake for $200.
Their goal was 50 cakes for 50 years!
The showcase cake was decorated as a spinning windmill and measured 3 feet by 4 feet. The windmill paid homage to the days when windmills ground grain into flour, and it is also the Deising’s logo.
The cakes were displayed in the bakery’s parking lot and over 3,000 people attended the celebration which raised over $15,000. The school used the proceeds to educate their staff on ground breaking methodologies for teaching autistic children.
Every year the bakery also gives the People’s Place, a Kingston thrift store and food pantry, gift certificates for 52 birthday cakes. Each week, the organization surprises a birthday guy or gal with a special cake.
A few of the other civic, social and religious organizations that benefit from the Deising family’s generosity include the Woodstock Film Festival, area soup kitchens and the local schools.
“There’s always something going on at the Kingston High School, and those kids can eat,” said Eric.
The Chiz Heart Pantry has received over $6,500 in food products this year, and the Ulster County Community Action program has received weekly donations totally $6,700.
With the holidays right around the corner, treat yourself to one of Deising’s chocolate bombes (Eric’s personal favorite), or pick up a stollen, a German Christmas bread.
Deising's Bakery is a true HERO OF THE HUDSON VALLEY!
111 North Front Street Kingston, NY 12401