Words by: Jinky Romero Photos by: Jarred Schuetze
Family owned business, Hamlin Pharmacy and Fountain, is a local landmark for most people in Corpus Christi. Now, after almost 60 years since they first opened their doors, they are stepping into the next generation with an exciting new venture: the expansion of Hamlin Bakery.
Head baker Katie Nicholson practically grew up inside Hamlin. Her grandfather started the business in 1960 and her mom took over in the 80s.
“I started working there as soon as I was tall enough to push the buttons on the cash register,” she shared.
Incorporating the bakery into Hamlin started in 2008 when Nicholson, who attended Del Mar Culinary School and the International Culinary Center in New York City, began baking small batches of cookies and cakes for the Fountain. From there, the bakery has expanded from just Nicholson to a talented team of lady bakers: the scientist, Vanessa Valadez, the artist, Jessica Reyes, and the “lover of all things bread,” Jill Sansing.
As the team grew, so did the business. The now expanded Hamlin Bakery has a bright, friendly, and welcoming atmosphere. Nicholson and the team used refurbished original fixtures from the pharmacy for their bakery cases, as a nod to the legacy her grandfather built—modernizing, and at the same time, keeping its authenticity. As for their pastries, gaining inspiration from the greats, the movers, and the shakers in the scene, Hamlin Bakery serves everything, from Classic French pastry, American sweets, and South Texas Classics.
Hamlin Bakery prides themselves in using only the best ingredients (a distinction that is very noticeable in all their items), such as Kind Arthur flour, Neilson Massey extracts, and various high-end chocolates. As much as possible, they also try to use local produce, especially for their homemade jams and fillings.
The bakery is best known for their mouthwatering French macarons, which come in different and unique flavors—such as espresso, pecan, PB&J, and even Fruity Pebbles! Other daily servings include fresh selections of breakfast breads, cookies, brownies, pies, and cakes. Their Saturday-only menu is another thing to get excited about, which includes doughnuts and Kouign Amann.
With all this and even more on the horizon for Hamlin Bakery, there is no doubt that this new generation will not only continue, but also grow immensely, their already great legacy.
3801 South Staples St. Corpus Christi