Dello Mano is an artisanal bakery located in the heart of historic Brisbane, Queensland. We are a family-owned business dedicated to sharing beautiful, handmade food with the world. Like all the best truly handmade food, everything that comes out of our bakery is infused with ours and our teams love of food, our collective compassion for our customers, and a few sprinklings of our personal family life story.
We are Deborah and Bien Peralta, a married couple who share a deep-set love of food. We founded Dello Mano in 2006, an event that consummated years of hopes and dreams. In order to follow these dreams, we stepped away from our fast-paced office jobs with multinational food brands such as Kellogg's and Cadbury. Despite our corporate affiliations, we were longtime devotees of the Slow Food Movement, a group based in Italy that is devoted to preserving traditional gastronomy around the world. We longed to start a business that would allow us to treat food according to the tenets of Slow Food: with hands-on care, respect, and love. The birth of our two daughters intensified this desire. The constant effort to provide them with wholesome, natural nutrition heightened our awareness of food and the decisions that surround it — and, of course, we wanted a lifestyle that would allow us to spend more time with them.
It was a family trip to Italy that finally catalysed our entrepreneurial spirit. With our two little girls in tow, we ate our way from Turin to Rome. We started at the Slow Food Movement's Salone del Gusto, a massive exposition showcasing traditional food from every corner of the world, and zigzagged our way down the peninsula. Everywhere we looked, we were entranced and inspired by Italian reverence for food. Rather than being mere monetary transactions, interactions between food producer and customers were mutually respectful relationships, enforced with layers of trust and tradition. We were particularly struck by a seemingly everyday scene in a tiny Roman cured meat shop: the salumiere carefully sliced a measure of prosciutto, wrapped it in crisp white paper, and presented it like a lovingly-chosen gift to his customer. We wanted our own business to offer similarly personalised service and carefully-prepared food. The name Dello Mano, Italian for "of the hand," is an homage to the philosophy that underpins Italian cuisine, which emphasises high-quality ingredients and painstaking technique, all selected and made by hand.
We began our business with one product: our Luxury Classic Belgian Chocolate Brownie. The apparent simplicity of this brownie belies the months of development that went into it; before we were confident with our recipe, we subjected our friends and neighbors to countless rounds of trial and error. In the earliest days of our business — after we finally settled on a recipe — we baked everything out of a shared local football club kitchen. We’d feed our small children and pack us all up our own home and sold online, marketing almost entirely through word of mouth. Those simple efforts proved sufficient; within a few months, we were invited to participate d at the Powerhouse Farmers Market, which was then the most prestigious market of its kind in Brisbane. Our daughters, then eight and ten, were more than happy to help run the stand in homemade uniforms and branded bandanas. The little stand we held every week at that farmers' market became the foundation for a decade of consistent growth.
It was something of a gamble to start a business around brownies in 2006; at that time, the American confection was all but unknown in Australia. Our intensely chocolatey, unctuously rich version, made with real Belgian chocolate and farm-fresh eggs, ended up sparking something of a movement in Australia. Competitor brownie bakers began popping up like daisies across the country. As the trend continued to spread, the local food media began reporting on a so-called Brownie Revolution. Now you'd be hard-pressed to find a high-end bakery in Australia that doesn't offer at least one variety of brownie. Of course, we think Dello Mano's own are still the best. Our brownies have been enjoyed by such famous palates as Ashton Kutcher and Anne Hathaway, along with many thousands of connoisseurs from around Australia and the world.
Today, we've expanded our offerings beyond our signature brownies to a full range of sweet and savoury baked goods. One of our biggest sellers is our line of premium cakes, which includes creative concoctions such as Raspberry & Passionfruit, Chocolate Milkshake, and giant versions of our favourite brownie flavours such as Dulce de Leche and Caramelised Macadamia. Dello Mano cakes look as good as they taste, making them an eye-catching centerpiece for special-occasion tables. If you prefer a smaller bite of decadence, we suggest our truffles and cookies, which are packed full of carefully-curated flavours including whiskey and Madisson mint. On the savoury side, we turn out both traditional Australian meat pies and French-inspired tarts. Both come as family-size takeaways that make an indulgent alternative to pizza for an easy dinner at home. Of course, we haven't abandoned the sweet that brought us where we are today; our brownies now come in a wide range of creative varieties, from classic peanut butter to daring chili.
In addition to selling our treats online, we now have two retail stores offering sweet and savoury produce. Both located in Brisbane. At both of our locations, you can enjoy our baked goods against a backdrop of some of the most beautiful and significant real estate in Brisbane. One of our shops is located in the historic Tattersalls Arcade on Queen Street, while the other is ensconced in the tree-lined neighbourhood of New Farm, Brisbane's own "Little Italy." Our cafes serve some of Brisbane's tastiest and most indulgent brunches and afternoon teas on gleaming gold stands and white tablecloths, all under the shifting shade of fiddle leaf figs. We aim to evoke a more leisurely way of life and to bring a measure of much-needed luxury to our customers' busy schedules.
Today we are supported by an amazing team of Dellomanonians, who share our dream to create beautiful handmade food in a wonderful team and happy team environment where creativity abounds and has no boundaries. From our chefs and bakers to our front of house team and beyond, such beautiful team energy now prevails and continues to fire the momentum of our dream – our dream to deliver beautiful handmade food.
If you're in the area, we'd love to see you at either of our Brisbane locations. Those who come from farther-flung places can enjoy Dello Mano brownies shipped right to their homes. We hope to someday share a slice of Dello Mano warmth and love with everyone in the world.
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