Adelaide Hills

Iconic Hahndorf German Cake Shop says Auf Wiedersehen for now

After 50 years the iconic Hahndorf German Cake Shop will be closing down, owner Steven Matthew’s is tired and ready to move on.

After enriching the Hahndorf community and delighting taste buds for half a century, the beloved German Cake Shop is bidding adieu on the 28th of April, 2024. Nestled in the heart of Hahndorf, an area that boasts of its contemporary charm and German heritage, the German Cake Shop has stood as a testament to the area’s rich cultural legacy.

With a 50-year-long history, the German Cake Shop has become an essential part of any Hahndorf day trip and is regarded by many as the beating heart of Hahndorf.

For 25 years, Steven Matthews has been at the helm, pouring his heart into this cornerstone of Hahndorf. But as he approaches his 67th birthday, Steven has decided it’s time to retire. “I’m tired. This Easter was my last,” he reflects. “Running this business is demanding, especially as you get older. It’s time for me and my long-standing baker, who’s also in his 60s, to step back.”

“You give it your life. We work seven days a week in the business, and have devoted ourselves to selling products that aren’t available anywhere else but here.”

The German Cake Shop is renowned for its mouthwatering German bread, from rye to sourdough, and not to forget, its signature mega pretzels and beesting cakes—a delight for anyone with a sweet tooth. However, it’s not just the food that made the cake shop a Hahndorf must-visit; its eclectic collection of kitsch memorabilia, from antique cupboards to vintage beer steins, added to its charm.

With 90% of these collectibles already sold, Steven has announced a final commercial auction for the remaining items on the 29th of April. This marks a unique opportunity for visitors to own a piece of the cake shop’s history.

The closure is not just the end of an era but also a celebration of the memories created within its walls. “I’ve witnessed life’s full spectrum here—from seeing children grow up to serving generations of families. It’s been a privilege,” Steven shares.

“Since I’ve been here I’ve seen the Olympic torch go past me in the year 2000, I saw the start of the Tour Down Under, and GST came in the year after I started here,” says Steven.

“I’ve seen kids being born and growing up and I’ve seen people getting older. Customers whose wives or husbands come in, come in without their partner one day.”

Though the physical space is closing, the legacy of the German Cake Shop will continue. A smaller establishment, spearheaded by one of Steven’s employees, is set to open in Hahndorf’s main street by mid-July. While this new cafe won’t bake on-site, partnering with Jenny’s and Lobethal bakeries ensures the continuation of their beloved treats, including those iconic giant pretzels.

Expect a quicker, take-away style cafe for the new establishment.

If you are feeling as sentimental as I am, make sure you plan a trip to the hills ASAP and indulge in the delicious items on offer before the German Cake Shop closes on the 28th.

Auf Wiedersehen Steven good luck on your next chapter!

German Cake Shop – Hahndorf
Where: 2 Pine Ave, Hahndorf SA 5245
When: 8am – 4:30pm everyday
For more info, click here

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