SAFETY HARBOR, FL – Bassano Cheesecake, a handcrafted, family-owned cheesecake company, is excited to announce the opening of its first café on 507 Main Street in Safety Harbor, Florida.
In twelve whirlwind months, the husband and wife team of Tom and Cindy Bassano have outgrown both a home-based business and a rented professional catering kitchen space, to move into their own café featuring over 20 different cheesecake varieties.
In June 2019, when Cindy replicated Tom’s Aunt Clara’s recipe, the couple had no idea that their life was about to change. They simply wanted an authentic New York-style cheesecake and was unable to find a company that would ship to Florida.
After taste-testing their recipe on friends and family, it was unanimously agreed that the couple could easily sell their delicious homemade cheesecake. They delivered a cheesecake to Felice’s Deli. As Cindy was walking in the door of her home, the phone rang with orders from the deli. The story repeated with other local delis, catering companies, and restaurants.
Tom said, “This is a passion for us. You take your fork and slice through, and get a little resistance down to the crust, and you have to push a little harder to get through the crust. It makes that little crunch sound, and that piece comes up. It has that almost melt-in-your-mouth texture, not thick like pudding, and not thin like whip cream. It’s just that in-between texture and then the graham cracker crust. A good cheesecake is a whole experience.”
Since that fateful day, Bassano Cheesecake has earned consistent online rave reviews from the public on social media and found fans and fame in local celebrities, including Fox 13 TV host Charley Belcher, retired Tampa Bay Buccaneer Mike Alstott, and The Bone radio show host Mike Calta.
A two-day celebration is planned to introduce the community to Bassano Cheesecake. On Thursday night, June 18, members of the Upper Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce and Safety Harbor Chamber of Commerce will do a ribbon-cutting ceremony to welcome the Bassano’s new café in downtown Safety Harbor.
On Friday, June 19, the couple will officially open their restaurant to the public at 6 am.
Walking into the Bassano Cheesecake Café, the interior is a cozy backdrop of exposed piping made to look like vintage copper, steampunk lights with Edison bulbs, a rustic shiplap wall, charging stations, and an eclectic mix of mismatched chairs and tables showcasing family board games. Bassano Cheesecake hopes to be the meeting place for strangers to become friends, and family, friends, coworkers, and couples to reconnect.
To complement the decadent cheesecake, the café features Teabella tea and Joffrey’s coffee. With every cup of Joffrey’s Valor brand, the company gives back to Veterans.
In addition to giving back with their coffee choice, the Bassanos believe in paying it forward in their community. Every month a charity will receive 10% of order proceeds. In June, the Calta Foundation is the café’s recipient.
“We wanted our café to be someplace we would like to go, like when you have company, and they ask ‘where’s a good place to go.’ We want Bassano’s Cheesecake to be that place. We wanted to create nostalgia where families can sit down without their heads buried in their phones, eat some good cheesecake, play some games, and spend quality time together. It’s a step back in time to when you were a kid again.
Without all the people who helped us get here, we wouldn’t be known. We might still be back making our twelfth cheesecake. We go to stores, and people recognize us, and we’re amazed that people know us. People were posting about our opening online, and I’m wondering, ‘how do they even know that?’ How do people even know who we are?’ ” Tom paused, considering. “I think the hardest part of our opening is going to be trying not to watch our customers when they take that first bite to see their reaction.”
Cindy added, “It’s important to us that people like it. In the beginning, it was all friends and family. Now when people tell me how they like our cheesecake, it’s kind of surreal. It makes me so happy. I hope after people experience our café and our cheesecake, they can’t wait to come back again.”
For more information, please visit www.bassanocheesecake.com. This event is free and open to the public.