The cookie crumbles

Celebrated Austin pastry chef unexpectedly closes flagship bakery

Celebrated Austin pastry chef unexpectedly closes flagship bakery

Bribery Bakery ATX Jodi Elliott
Pastry chef Jodi Elliott will be selling her Bribery Bakery business on the cheap. Bribery Bakery/ Facebook

They say bad news comes in threes. So when we received the news on January 31 that two of Austin’s most iconic culinary institutions — Springdale Farm and Ruby’s BBQ — were closing shop, we girded ourselves for more disappointment. That came sooner than expected from noted Austin pastry chef Jodi Elliott, who announced later that day that Bribery Bakery was also closing.

Already one of Austin’s most well known pastry chefs from her work at Foreign & Domestic, Elliott struck out on her own in March 2015 with the opening of Bribery in Wells Branch. A second location in Mueller followed in February 2016, adding a full bar and savory dishes like breakfast sandwiches and chicken and dumplings to the mix.

The Mueller location, soon to be the home to Lady Quackenbush’s Cakery, closed after a little over a year in business. In a September 2017 Facebook post, Elliott said, “I'm supposed to be stoic and upbeat but honestly it's been a difficult few years trying to juggle everything and I just burned out. I'm ready to reset and refocus on what really matters to me, personally and professionally.”

According to the post, the original Wells Branch shop was supposed to become a “creative pastry workshop,” allowing her to focus on craft instead of “bills, taxes, schedules, emails, and putting out fires.”

In the statement, published both on Facebook and through the bakery’s newsletter, Elliott was not quite as explicit as to why she was ending the business altogether, instead using the platform to mainly thank her supporters.

“After a lot of thought and soul searching, I’ve made the difficult decision to close and sell Bribery Bakery,” she wrote. “It’s been an unforgettable and invaluable life experience that I will always cherish. Opening my own little bakery was a dream come true and sharing my baked goods with Austin has been my absolute pleasure. I’m beyond grateful for everyone’s support over the years and thank you for letting me share in your celebrations.”

Bribery will now be sold at a “bargain price” in order to kickstart an aspiring culinary business. Elliott will move on to culinary consulting.