MESA, AZ — Proof has found a new home for its bread-baking operations in downtown Mesa. While construction begins on that project, the owners recently opened a hyper-local market a few doors down.
The move comes after months of disputes and negotiations between the owners of Proof, whose baking operations were — and for the time being, still are — out of a home garage, an apparent disgruntled neighbor, and the City of Mesa, who has fielded those complaints.
As a result, owners Jonathan Przybyl and his wife, Amanda Abou-Eid, were forced to find another spot to bake their artisan sourdough bread and pastries.
“We definitely have outgrown what a cottage bakery was all about. Nonetheless, we had to move a little early. It’s a very expensive transition,” he said, estimating that it would cost $400,000 between the move, construction, permits, and equipment.
“That’s been a big stressor in the same year as the pandemic, but we ultimately found the right set of buildings here on Main Street," Przybyl said.
They launched a GoFundMe last year that has raised $303,000 to date.
Their baking operations will be located near Tacos Chiwas. Construction started recently on the 3,000-square-foot space, which is double the size of their current operations.
A few doors down from there, they opened Main Street Harvest, a small market that sells Proof’s bread, vegetables, fruit, meats, and household products from small, independent businesses and local farms in the area, such as candles, honey, sauces, and homemade pasta.
Vendors include Myke Olsen, who owns Myke’s Pizza and now has begun selling homemade ice cream, Steadfast Farm in Mesa, Southwest Mushrooms, Hunter Jaymes Meat Co., FARMi, Benny Blanco Tortillas, Bad Dog Salsa, Sherpa Kitchen, Simple Soda Co., and Twisted Bee Farms, among others.
“We’re here to represent all these local businesses and to be a bridge from people wondering where — people sitting at home wondering where their food comes from — well, here it is. This is — the people in this store are the ones making your food locally. This is it,” he said.
Przybyl said they're gaining about another vendor a day. They are also looking at offering a grocery delivery service, such as what they do with Proof bread.
“It’s the type of thing that you’re going to spend more dollars on, but you’re getting to know the people that are actually making the food. You will know your baker, you will know these people by being in our store because we know their stories,” he said.
Jonathan and his wife bought the business in 2017 from the original owner, who moved out of state, and learned the owner’s recipes and baking process.
They were customers first and became loyal fans, he said.
The market is located at 121 W Main Street Mesa, AZ 85201. It is open Tuesday - Saturday, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Przybyl said the full transition of the bakery is expected to open in the next few months.