Dean Kim - OC Baking Company
If you’ve ever dined out in a high-end restaurant, or even a casual eatery in Orange County, chances are you’ve enjoyed Dean Kim’s delicious bread. Master Baker Dean Kim is at the OC Baking Co. Each day he wakes up at 3 a.m. to start his day, catching up on the news, drinking a cup of hot tea, and then heading over to OC Baking Co. by 4:30 a.m. to start putting out 20,000 units of bread a day.
He’ll work until about 1 p.m., go home for an early dinner with his wife, maybe a nap, and he’s right back at the bakery at 5 p.m. and normally stays until midnight or 1 a.m. “I don’t need a lot of sleep. If I’m lucky I get 3 -4 hours of sleep a day” Dean says. “I’m used to it. I go to a gym about three days a week, but other than that, I enjoy being at work.”
Dean Kim’s company was also hit hard by the pandemic. He lost about 80% of his business at the height of the shutdown. Things are a lot better today, yet he has the same issues many businesses have, such as labor shortage problems.
OC Baking Co. supplies breads to 100 hotels and restaurants in Orange County, Los Angeles and Long Beach. They make 40 to 50 different types of breads including Sourdough, Brioche, French, Squaw, Seeded Rye, Whole Wheat, Marble Rye, Cranberry Walnut and many more. OC Baking Co. also makes custom breads for its clients.
It’s a commercial bakery, but you can enjoy OC Baking Co’s bread at home. Just stop by the Orange Home Grown Farmers & Artisans Market in Orange on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., or OC Baking Co.’s Pop-Up Shop in Orange on the last Friday of each month from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
There are also a variety of vendor/friends at the Pop-Up that could include Cali Dumpling, Terrace Hill Oil and Jones Coffee, Brenda’s Tamales, Crema Artisan Bakers, Do Valle Pasta, Kenchan Ramen, ADYA’s Indian food, Miss Mini Donuts Orange County, Los Angeles and Long Beach.
Regulars at Bracken’s Kitchen’s Hungry Games events have also enjoyed OC Baking Co.’s breads. Dean has been involved at all of our charity events. Not only that, he’s supplying breads to those we serve.
“We normally have 15% extra bread every day, so we split that up between Bracken’s and a couple other kitchens and charitable organizations,” said Dean. Dean and Bill are longtime friends. They’ve known each other and worked together for years since Bill’s previous work as an Executive Chef in the luxury hotel world.
“The reason I am involved with Bracken’s Kitchen is really because of Bill Bracken. He could be an executive chef anywhere he wants to, but instead he went a different route and chose hunger and malnutrition in Orange County and all over,” Dean said. “He gave up a lot to really help and guide people. He sacrifices his life daily, just to serve people. He’s a humanitarian and he’s someone who I idolize in the since that I don’t know if I could ever have the strength to do something like that.”
We feel so fortunate to know Dean Kim, a man with a big heart and a talent for making some of the best bread you’ve ever tasted. We also feel grateful to be able to offer this wonderful bread to our friends in need.
OC Baking Co. is at 1960 N. Glassell in Orange.