The Dough Cake & Pastry sells the cutest buns that look just like little corgi butts, complete with a dot of hazelnut "poop."
It's not the first time the concept of edible poop has been marketed in a cutesy way to people in Toronto, but corgi butt buns are just a small part of the vast array of what The Dough has to offer.The Chinese-style bakery opened in fall 2022, but was actually an idea long before lockdowns ever even began.
It's run by Aaron Situ and bakers Jay Zhou and Leon Leong, along with front-end manager Cathy Luo, and their staff.
"Jay has always wanted to open his own bakery after working in the industry for so long and I’ve always wanted to try my hands at running a business. We had some preliminary discussions about opening up a bakery," Situ tells blogTO.
"Once we saw that the restrictions were starting to ease, we felt that it was the best time to put everything into action because it takes time to set up the bakery, from finding the store location to doing the renovations to designing the menu. We thought that, by the time the shop is ready, it should be about the same time as when all restrictions are lifted."
While Situ's culinary background is limited to home cooking and working in restaurants as a teen, Zhou and Leong have 15 years of experience in the industry working at various bakeries.
Creations like the corgi butt buns may attract attention, but the business still largely functions like a classic Chinese bakery with an array of classics to browse and grab, like egg tarts ($2.25), pineapple buns ($2) and coconut buns ($2.45).
"I think what makes us unique is that while we are a new generation of Chinese bakery that aims to push the envelope, we still take pride in mastering some of the traditional items," says Situ.
The pineapple buns are actually some of their best-selling items, along with their hot dog buns and different types of toasts, like sweet bean paste toast ($8.50) and saltie egg yolk meat floss toast ($9.50).
Their less traditional creations are inspired by anything and come from anywhere.
"We got the idea from our friend Mathew's corgi, Yuna. One day Mathew brought Yuna out and that was the first time I met her. I could just see her shaking her butt when walking and I thought, this is just adorable. No wonder people always say that the fluffy booty is one of the corgi's signature features," says Situ.
"Then I was thinking since our buns are also fluffy, maybe we can make a bun shaped like her butt. I brought the idea to Leon and then he was able to make it happen."
If you're looking for more creative options from them, you can also expect seasonal offerings like snow globe cakes and a special "Golden Lucky Box" treat that's available for Lunar New Year.
It seems the business model is working as the Markham bakery is planning a second store.
"We are taking a more cautious approach as we want to maintain the quality of our services and products," says Situ. "These are the things that could be compromised when businesses expand and we want to minimize that."