Dozen Bake Shop moves to Craig Street

This summer, a branch of the Dozen Bake Shop opened on Craig Street, targeting nearby university students. (credit: Michael Kahn/Forum Editor) This summer, a branch of the Dozen Bake Shop opened on Craig Street, targeting nearby university students. (credit: Michael Kahn/Forum Editor)

After encountering maintenance issues and difficulty hiring staff members in the Squirrel Hill area, a branch of the Dozen Bake Shop has opened on South Craig Street in Oakland.

“Most of our customers were from Carnegie Mellon University or the University of Pittsburgh, so moving to Oakland allowed us to centralize and better serve our customers,” said Kelly Marie McKenna, manager of the new Oakland store.

Dozen caters and delivers to a wide customer base in Squirrel Hill and Oakland, and with the new location, the bakery shop can deliver all of its goodies to students in their dorms.

The old location prevented the store from offering the same variety of goods that are sold at its other three branches. The Oakland store is now able to offer sandwiches, a larger variety of cookies, granola, a greater vegan selection, pot pies, macaroni salad, quiche, and more.

The wood paneling, clean interior design, and large display area of the new branch are reminiscent of an old-fashioned candy store. Big-bulb Christmas lights surround shelves of jars filled with sprinkles, cookies, and granola, as well as birthday boxes for individual or even a dozen Dozen cupcakes.

The refrigerated display showcases the macaroni salad, sandwich, and pot pie choices.

Dozen Bake Shop also offers coffee, tea, and other beverages — providing both 2 percent and soy milk upon request.

This new location has been so popular, “we actually ran out of cupcakes yesterday,” John Karlovic, a Dozen staff member, said. “All of our cupcakes are baked at the Lawrenceville location, then shipped to the branch stores.”

The Lawrenceville Dozen Bake Shop offers seating, free Wi-Fi, Sunday brunch, and a kitchen where customers can watch the bakers make and frost each cupcake.

“All of our goods are made without chemical preservatives, so we encourage our customers to enjoy them the same day they are purchased,” McKenna said. “We also use the freshest and finest local ingredients available to us.”

The fair trade coffee served is Commonplace Coffee from Indiana, Pa., and most of the milk, eggs, and other dairy products come from Turner Dairy Farms in Penn Hills.

While some customers may appreciate the effort to support local farms and businesses as well as the natural quality of the food, others are simply concerned with the taste.

“As long as it doesn’t cause any harm to my health and it tastes good, I think it’s all good.” Bahati Mutisya, a senior business management major in the Tepper School of Business said. “I feel that the move was very smart. I think Dozen addicts will be very excited.”

The store has recently been giving out free samples to attract customers to more than just the cupcakes. “I’ve only eaten the free cookies; they were amazing,” said Brandon Tyson, a senior information systems major.

The cupcakes are sold for $2.50 each, and the store offers a menu detailing what varieties of cupcakes are available on certain days.

“I’ve never been there, but I hear lots of good things about it. So I’m going to try it sometime in the future.” sophomore economics major Elise Lim said.