28 Derby Bakery & Café Makes the Most Buttery and Flaky Croissants We’ve Ever Had From a Local BakeryApril 4, 2018
Barista-turned-home baker Miguel Santiago has achieved what many consider to be a pinnacle in baking (particularly in the Philippines, where the heat and humidity pose particular challenges): the perfect croissant. We know, the word perfect gets abused to the point of wearing down, but we mean it when we say that it is the most flaky and buttery croissant we have tried from any local bakers. His home-based kitchen, he reveals, is a pretty legit setup that houses equipment which allows him to make professional-kitchen level baked goods just meters from where he sleeps. With his business partner and friend Nikki Vasagas, who bakes 28 Derby’s sweets like brownies and cookies, as well as another baker, the three bake first thing in the morning (taking breaks on Mondays only), and with a bike delivery service, are able to deliver their baked goods as fresh as possible to the neighborhood.
While Santiago tells us he always wanted to be in food, he started out with coffee as a way to ease into its world. “I got into coffee because . . . my parents didn’t want me in culinary school at the time,” he says. “I did it because everyone in the house drank coffee, and it’s very accessible. coffee shops are everywhere so I just worked for whoever would take me.” The scrappy entrepreneur worked for Craft Coffee Workshop in Quezon City as a barista when he was a freshman. And by sophomore year, his interest grew towards baking, and he eventually worked under Richie Manapat of Panaderya Toyo as his interest in bread deepened.
[Baking] was just something to keep me sane while I was working in coffee [initially] . . . Just to break the monotony of all the coffee, I decided to take bread-baking because it was a lot like coffee in the sense that you only have a few ingredients and you have to make different things from it. And it was something I could do in the middle of the night with no one bothering me so I used that time to recharge.”
Eventually, his parents saw that his resolve would not change and Santiago took an 11-month course in pastry-making at Enderun and he’s been working his way to his goal-bakery ever since. “I really looked up to a lot of french bakers and I always dreamed of having that bakery and café with the full spread of croissants, danishes, french pastries, rustic breads.” While 28 Derby is still in its early stages, we sense that this young and enterprising baker’s dreams are close enough to taste it.
28 Derby Bakery
A home-based bakery in Quezon City that offers home-delivery.