FL Bakery & Restaurant, a family-owned food enterprise where Puerto Rico's rich cuisine and vibrant culture converge, is set to open its second location on August 24. The new 3,500 square-feet bakery, which features the brand's vibrant and colorful design is located at 1654 North Semoran Boulevard in Orlando. FL Bakery Orlando will celebrate its grand opening at 9:00 a.m. with a ribbon-cutting ceremony hosted by the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando. Guests will enjoy cooking demonstrations at 10:30 a.m. by renowned Puerto Rican chef and TV personality Cielito Rosado, and at 12:30 p.m. social media personality Sabor with Love will be cooking a special lunch dish, followed by a “meet and greet” at 3:30 p.m. with Puerto Rican celebrity Daniela Droz.
“FL Bakery Orlando marks a new milestone for our company. We are grateful and incredibly fortunate to have the support of this amazing community. Central Florida welcomed us with open arms when we opened our first bakery and they are the reason we are celebrating today,” says Rafael Román, president and owner of the company. “FL Bakery is a tribute to my beloved homeland's cuisine, it is a place that celebrates the flavor, way of life, and those special moments that we all treasured in Puerto Rico. Once visitors get a taste of FL Bakery, they always crave more.”
Roman, 43, opened the first FL Bakery & Restaurant, an 8,400 square feet location, in Kissimmee on July 15, 2020.
"FL Bakery & Restaurant has been on an unstoppable growth trajectory over the past two years. We have seen a significant growth in both, the fresh retail business at our Kissimmee location and our wholesale distribution," adds Roman. "In order to supply the ongoing demand, this past month of June we opened a warehouse in Orlando of approximately 4,000 square-feet. This new expansion brings new efficiencies to FL Bakery’s distribution capabilities, and exemplifies our company’s commitment to the economic growth of Central Florida.”
FL Bakery & Restaurant currently distributes their signature “pan sobao” (sweet bread), and traditional Puerto Rican pastries to dozens of coffee shops and restaurants across the Greater Orlando area.
Puerto Rico's long history of diverse culinary traditions- a unique blend of African, Spanish, and Taíno Indian roots –is palpable from the moment you walk in and are greeted by the bakery’s staff. FL Bakery is the place for endless “frituras” (fritters), rice and beans, “cuerito” (pork belly), “mofongo”, Puerto Rican coffee and delicious “pan sobao”, their popular sweet bread.
For Puerto Ricans living in Florida, the bakery’s warm ambiance, friendly-service, and menu staples, such as breakfast “cremas”—oatmeal, cream of wheat and cornmeal—is a reminder of home. And for those who did not grow up in Puerto Rico, the bakery offers a burst of flavor in every bite.
Roman’s entrepreneurial passion was ignited after working in the restaurant industry in his early twenties. In 2004, he ventured to open his first coffee shop in Utuado, a town located on the Island’s central region. Followed by a second and third bakery in the same town in 2007 and 2008, consecutively. Since then, Roman has been unstoppable. The “foodpreneur” continued to rapidly expand his food business across Puerto Rico, opening a total of 15 bakeries from 2004 to 2020. In 2020, the businessman took a leap of faith and opened FL Bakery & Restaurant, a state-of-the-art bakery in Kissimmee, Florida.
Today, Roman runs seven bakeries in Puerto Rico and two bakeries and a distribution warehouse in Central Florida. Combined, the company creates approximately 300 direct jobs and generates approximately 400 indirect jobs. With the addition of the Lake Nona and Altamonte Springs bakeries, expected to open in 2023, the company’s estimated economic impact on Central Florida’s economy surpasses the $10 million-dollar mark.
"We take our responsibility to lead FL Bakery & Restaurant into the future very seriously because we know that this company supports the livelihood of dozens of families,” added Roman. "We are committed to supporting the social and economic development of the communities where FL Bakery operates, and our employees live.”
FL Bakery & Restaurant Orlando new store features the brand’s welcoming atmosphere, serving traditional Puerto Rican food at an affordable price.