Agostina Alvarez and Valentina Udabe both left Argentina for love. And after they both got married and settled into their new lives in Park City, they met through a close-knit group of local Argentines. Their friendship turned into a partnership with the creation of Tina’s Bakery, an Argentine bakery that was founded on the Argentine tradition of sharing food with family and friends.
“We bring our traditions and family recipes back from home,” says Agostina, who bakes all the sweets, cakes, and cookies. She explains, “My aunt is the baker of the family, and I learned everything from her in Argentina.” Meanwhile, Valentina makes all the savory tarts and empanadas, something her grandma taught her how to make. She recalls, “My grandma is the cook of the family… My mom is a baker of sweets and cakes… I followed my grandma and took the savory path.”
For Valentina, opening Tina’s Bakery fulfills a lifelong aspiration. She smiles, “My dream was to open up an empanada shop in Park City.”
In June, Tina’s Bakery launched on Instagram and started taking digital orders through the social app. Agostina laughs as she remembers, “We thought we were going to do six empanadas a month… We wanted to start small and had no idea how big it could be.” But Tina’s Bakery’s blossomed rapidly. Ordering online is easy and the bakery’s delivery and pick-up options are convenient.
Both Agostina and Valentina had full-time jobs when they launched Tina’s, but after orders consistently poured in, Valentina began to shift her career focus. “I started leaving real estate behind to focus mainly on Tina’s Bakery.”
Agostina and Valentina attribute their success to several factors: They identified a niche market of consumers who enjoy authentic Argentine food with a twist of sophistication, and they strived to create a memorable eating experience. “We want people to remember the visual experience,” and Valentina emphasizes, “We make everything, everything from scratch.”
Tina’s Bakery continues to thrive online, and a brick-and-mortar location is in the works. If all goes according to plan, Tina’s Bakery will open in the outlet center in Kimball Junction this winter, where they’ll continue to offer all their current menu items, in addition to pick-up and delivery options.
Tina’s Bakery goodies are an excellent addition to small gatherings. “The products are social-distancing friendly; you can grab one without touching
another one — it’s finger food,” explains Agostina.
During a time when many are feeling isolated or distant from those they love, Tina’s Bakery is working overtime to provide Park City with a taste of Argentina in a way that lives up to the country’s values and tradition around friends, family, and food. As Agostina says, “The essence of Tina’s Bakery is that food is meant to be shared.”