Brunet brothers’ Getaway Cafe brings authentic gourmet French goodies on Pine Island
In the midst of everything going on in the world, appetites still need to be appeased. Fortunately for islanders, even a pandemic couldn’t stop Thomas, Adam and Florent Brunet from satisfying patrons with their lavish French food and pastry.
The three brothers came to America because it is filled with opportunity, and Pine Island because they wanted to be the only bakery, says owner Thomas Brunet.
The Getaway Cafe has been wowing islanders with its delicacies for two years now, with locals often praising the food for being as close to Parisian as they’ve tasted in the U.S. The secret, according to Thomas, is in the butter and also the process of rising the dough, he says, speaking of the croissant, which tops the list as their most popular menu item.
They’ve stayed open through the pandemic, following safety guidelines by offering carry-out service, providing breakfast, lunch and pastries, as well as an array of coffees.
Thomas says the three brothers have always been close, and that is likely the reason the business works for them. As children they often came to America on trips and made a plan early on to head for the U.S. and start a business together, they just weren’t certain where that would be.
Florent came first and settled on Pine Island. Two years later, Thomas joined him and 6 months after opening, Adam finally came, completing their trio. “This is the American dream,” said Thomas. “Many opportunities are here. I think there are only 6 or 7 thousand retail bakeries in the U.S. and 300 million people. But in France there are more like 10 or 15 thousand bakeries with only 60 million people, so this was a great opportunity to begin with.” The three continue to live on the island, “but not together,” Thomas said, laughing. “Seeing each other every day is enough.”
Their parents have always been very supportive of their endeavor and Thomas said they were involved in every aspect of the bakery from the beginning.
The three say they are happy where they are, feeding locals their traditional French cuisine in the island cafe, but confess perhaps a few new recipes may be on the horizon as well.
Thomas wants islanders to know the brothers have brought their knowledge of French culinary arts to share and they’ve made it their passion to prepare it to perfection.
Getaway Cafe is at 5281 Doug Taylor Circle, St. James City; (239) 283-3602.