Newly retired couple enters the food industry with rave reviews
Story John Hand | Photos Heather Claramunt
For most of us, the phrase “Italian bakery” warms the senses. In the case of Adrian and Robyn Kutch, the owners of Eagle’s new Bella Biscotteria Artisan Italian Bakery, the story is a bit more complicated.
In Adrian’s case, the story began before he was born when his Italian mother Ukrainian father founded a San Francisco Bay Area bakery, a family business which survived several decades. Adrian worked for a French pastry chef at Stanford University before starting his own construction business.
Robyn, meanwhile, instinctively loved to bake from childhood. After a career as a court reporter and paralegal, she eventually became office manager of Adrian’s business. One important benefit of working together was the flexibility to raise their son, Kristoffer, until he went to college in Texas. A year later, during Kristoffer’s sophomore year, Robyn and Adrian chose to retire and relocate.
They knew what they wanted in their new home: four seasons, a small-town vibe, near an airport, quality medical care—and Trader Joe’s! A former employee and good friend invited them to visit Eagle. They checked their wish list and were quickly hooked.
Once in Idaho, they knew their decision was a good one. They missed their family, friends and Bay Area sports, but new friendships quickly developed. Robyn was overwhelmed how the community seemed so “relaxed and happy and welcome us with open arms.”
But the Italian bakery? “It started with the biscotti,” they say. After their recipes received excellent feedback from friends, Robyn and Adrian wondered if there might be a business opportunity. A good friend encouraged them to enroll in the University of Idaho Food Technology Program. They then built their business plan.
Like other new businesses scheduled to open in 2020, Robyn and Adrian were forced to adapt. Adrian completed much of the remodel work in their building at 190 W. State St. The couple opened their doors in November with a “soft opening”. It was a little overwhelming during the holidays, but they found their stride.
Bella Biscotteria is an “Artisan Italian Bakery” based on the best traditions of Adrian’s family bakery and the famous “San Francisco Tradition” best exemplified by Liguria Bakery in the city’s North Beach. The Kutch philosophy focuses on “artisan by hand” products that are all made in their bakery. “You can tell the difference,” say Adrian and Robyn, because only the best ingredients are used.
It started with biscotti, of course, but the menu includes other Italian favorites including butter cookies, cannolis, and focaccia breads. It also pays homage to Kristoffer’s adopted state of Texas with kolaches—a Central European tradition—which are sweet pastries with a circle of cream cheese and a fruit center.
To maintain their high-quality standards, Bella Biscotteria is open three days a week—Thursday, Friday and Saturday, from 9am to 3pm. Pre-ordering via their website or by phone is highly recommended. Their focaccia bread is also served at Olive & Vyne and Dude De Walt Cellars in Eagle.
Despite the challenges of 2020, the Kutch family remains confident their Italian bakery has found the right location and the right community. “We are doing this for love,” says Robyn and it appears their new Eagle friends share the sentiment.
Be sure to follow them on @bella.biscotteria for a selection of baked goods – hand pies, cookies, muffins and of course biscotti.