OUR 20TH ANNIVERSARY has come and gone, but it would be careless if we did not shine a spotlight on the hands that feed you through our other brands. While they might not appear in Cedele uniforms, they are still very much a part of our Cedele family. Like the many people we’ve featured in this ‘Hands that Feed’ series, these hardworking folks are dedicated to serving you the best - from grain bowls to fresh salads - from our other brands.

 

Toss & Turn is our own salad bar concept, opened in 2012 with the intention to offer healthy, customizable salads for all. 

tnt henney

Wonder what Henney does at work?
Watch her in action here

Henney Loh 
Store manager
Toss & Turn (ION Orchard)

How long have you worked here? 

I've been working for two and a half years. And I’ve been here [at the Ion Orchard branch] since my first day.

What would you order at Toss & Turn? 

A base of spinach leaves, cheese, roast chicken, corn, edamame, cranberries with Caesar dressing.

What do you like best about working here? 

My colleagues, especially the wonderful aunties who work really hard. Without them I really won’t be able to operate the outlet.

Share something about yourself. 

I like to watch anime. My favourite is One Piece.

 

Lee Nah
Café Associate
Toss & Turn (ION Orchard)

How long have you worked here? 

More than half a year.

What’s your favourite thing about working here? 

The teamwork – we’re like a family here. Everyone works together to get things done.

What would be your order at Toss & Turn? 

A base of spinach leaves, tuna, mushroom with a vinaigrette dressing

Share something people don’t know about you. 

I love to exercise! I do Zumba twice a week.

tnt lee nah
 

Conceived as a refuge from the daily grind, Workspace Espresso Bar offers business professionals a respite from their busy work schedule, with a cup of specialty coffee and a hearty warm grain bowl.

wsp jj

Chee Jing Jie
(also known as JJ)
Assistant Store Manager
Workspace Espresso Bar

 

How long have you been working at Workspace?

I’ve been here for more than a year. I started here soon after graduating from university.

What do you like best about your job?

I enjoy interacting with our customers. We get so many different people here, so it’s challenging and fun at the same time. It’s definitely a feel good factor to have regular customers who return again.

What motivates you to continue working?

Customers – I feel happy when I serve them and they feel happy and satisfied.

How would you describe Ms Cheng?

Motivating, intelligent, knowledgeable. Her confidence rubs off on others, it makes them feel confident too.

 

Alicia Koh
Store Manager & Head Barista
Workspace Espresso Bar

 

How long have you worked here?

I’ve been here for more than a year, since we opened. I was working as a barista in an independent café before this.

What is the most rewarding thing about working here?

The satisfaction in knowing that you brightened up someone’s day with good service.

Any great memories of your time here?

When my ex-customers from my old café found out that I worked here, they came by and have become regulars. That’s pretty special.

Share something that people don’t know about you.

I collect sneakers. But I don’t wear them to work because they will get dirty pretty quickly.

 
workspace alicia

Named after the dialect equivalent in Hokkien for ‘Eat’, Chiak pays homage to local homestyle flavours and is essentially a return to our roots. We connect tradition with modern twists to our dishes so that we can keep ideas fresh whilst serving real food that comforts you like home. 

 
chiak sin yi

Ng Sin Yi
(affectionately known as Ah Bee)
Service leader & Store in-charge at Chiak

How long have you been working at Chiak? 

It’s been a year. Before this, I worked as a barista.

What do you like best about working at Chiak? 

I love how our team feels like family.

How have you grown in your role here? 

When I was asked to take charge of the store I felt a lot of pressure because I was afraid of the responsibilities. Now I am more confident of running the store, managing the ordering.

Any unforgettable experience in your year here? 

Our customers are really friendly. Some of our regulars even bring us gifts from their overseas trips or during the festive seasons (like Chinese New Year).

Share something people don’t know about you. 

I am trained in both traditional and western coffee styles.

Greater Lot is a collective foods store featuring a bakery, retail store and dining that supports your eating choices. With a superfoods menu, we are committed to serving natural and wholesome foods, a variety of bakes using unrefined sugar and natural beverages without additives to fuel you with the freshest we can get our hands on.

Jerry Er
Assistant Store Manager at Greater Lot

How long have you been working here? 

Just a short two months. I trained at the Cedele outlets at Robinsons Road and Wheelock Place before working at Greater Lot.

You’re pretty new to the company, do you have a favourite dish? 

I really like Cedele’s Chicken Mushroom Miso Chowder and Chocolate Banana Espresso cake. At Greater Lot, I enjoy our Beef Stir Fry & Prawn Grain Bowl.

What motivates you daily? 

Interacting with customers. It’s a great feeling to know that your customers are satisfied. It’s the small things, like the way they say goodbye when they leave.

Share 3 phrases you’d use to describe Ms Cheng. 

She is caring, passionate and pays great attention to detail.

What do you hope to achieve at Greater Lot? 

I hope to provide an environment where people enjoy working together. My hope is for the crew to pick up skills and progress as people in the F&B industry.

greater lot jerry

AS WE WIND DOWN our 20th birthday celebration, let's not forget to commemorate the hands that prepare your food and drinks. Their constant hard work ensures that the quality of your meals stay tip top and we can continue to feed you well.

   
heru cedele chef

Hernuddin Bin Syamsuddin
(also known as Heru)
Area chef

 

As an area chef, what do you do, other than cooking?

I look after 5 outlets and the staff in the kitchens.

How long have you worked here?

I’ve been here since 2006. I remember how on my first day, Ms Cheng personally taught me about our Cedele dishes in the Great World City outlet.

What’s your biggest challenge working in Cedele?

Mastering a new menu can be rather stressful. The challenging part is teaching the staff and ensuring the highest quality across all outlets.

How would you describe Ms Cheng?

She is a true businesswoman who really cares for the company. Without her talent and intelligence, Cedele won’t be where we are today. She is more than a boss, she really helped me so much, I feel extremely grateful and want to do my best for her.

Cheok Sin Soon
(Ah Soon)
Area Chef

 

How was your first day at Cedele?

My first day was 10 years ago at our Wheelock Place outlet, before it underwent renovations. I had to figure out the kitchen structure and learn how to make and wrap sandwiches. One week later I would learn how to cook our pastas and scrambled eggs.

What challenges do you face in your work here?

Initially I would learn a new dish at work and practise making it at home, to perfect it. I also struggle with my English, but being in Cedele has helped me improve.

What are you proud of, so far, in your time here?

It’s simple: I feel satisfied when a customer finishes the food I cook.

Share an unforgettable memory of your time in Cedele.

Not long after I joined the company, when I was working at our outlet at Wheelock place, one of the water pipes clogged and the kitchen was flooded, with water up to 3 inches high. We had to close the shop for the day and spend the day cleaning up but everyone was still committed to the task at hand and still kept positive.

Share something people don’t know about you.

Before Cedele, I worked in a Chinese restaurant, which was very busy without any time to rest. I had to clean seafood and would take 3 minutes to clean a box of 30 crabs.

soon cedele chef
nigel barista

Watch Nigel create latte art here

Nigel Lee
Barista & Beverage Development Executive

 

How long have you worked in Cedele and how does a typical day at work look like for you?

Before I joined Cedele, I was working shifts in 3 different cafes. I’ve been here for a year now. I go to the different outlets to check on the coffee quality and conduct training for our staff. I also come up with new beverage products for special occasions like the festive seasons.

What do you enjoy about working in Cedele?

Other than the chance to improve my coffee skills, I really enjoy meeting new people. It could be the customers I encounter or the staff I meet at various outlets.

In your one year in Cedele, what are you proud of achieving?

I’m proud of our coffee quality, as well as the Turmeric Honey Latte. It took months to research and experimenting to create it from scratch.

How have you personally changed since you joined Cedele?

I’ve started reading food labels, and started eating salads!

Do you have a favourite outlet?

I enjoy working at our newest concept, Greater Lot, because there’s more interaction with the customers, not just grab-and-go.

 
 

WE CONTINUE CELEBRATING our 20th year by highlighting the people who help us feed you well. While we love to serve you in the midst of the bustle of the CBD, we're paying close attention to the hands that are bringing our nutritious food closer to you and your homes.

Susan Tham
Store in-charge: Frankel

 

How long have you worked at Cedele?

More than 17 years. After years in the hotel industry, Cedele was supposed to be my semi-retirement job.

What motivates you?

My regular customers at Frankel bring me joy. Since we serve a neighbourhood, our regular customers feel like old friends. This work also keeps me fit and helps me stay healthy, and I’ll work as long as I still can.

Share some good memories of your time here.

When I first joined the company, there were only 1 or 2 outlets. I remember times when everyone, including the bosses, would be working together to get things done. It could be as simple as cutting brownies or cakes.

Share something that people don’t know about you.

I enjoy doing Sudoku, I like the challenge and it's fun.

Susan
Fairuz

Muhammad Fairuz Zainal
Area Manager of 9 stores

How did you start working at Cedele?

I initially started working at Cedele part time, while looking for a full time job. I eventually joined full time and it has been 10 years.

How has your experience in Cedele been?

I’ve really learnt a lot since joining the company. When I first started, I felt rather out of place because we were selling all these European breads. It piqued my interest and made me interested in knowing more – I spoke a lot to Ms Cheng and learnt a lot about our food and business from her.

How would you describe Ms Cheng?

She’s a mentor and advisor in many ways. Whenever I encounter a problem, she will readily give me advice or offer a solution. She’s also very focused and is a good communicator.

Share something people don’t know about you.

I’m an avid marathoner. I’d love to run some marathons overseas one day.

Safiyyah Binte Baguradin
Store Manager at Mapletree Business City

 

How long have you worked here?

I’ve been working here for 10 years. On my first day of work I was a 21 year old reporting to our outlets at Republic Plaza and Raffles City.

Do you have a favourite Cedele cake?

It’s no longer available, but I really loved our Chocolate Pistachio cake.

Share a good memory of your time in Cedele.

Back then, the company was still relatively small, with less outlets and staff. We would have many company gatherings, dinners. On special occasions, there would be cooked meals from the Central Kitchen. At one of our D&Ds (dinner & dance), I was the emcee – that was fun!

What are you most proud of from your time in Cedele?

When I first started, I was still playful and took work very lightly. Ms Cheng would often give me pep talks to motivate me. I’ve really grown to develop a good work ethic, to value punctuality, commitment. I’ve gone from being a Café Associate to my current position as a Store Manager. It’s an opportunity I’m extremely thankful for.

How would you describe Ms Cheng?

She is compassionate, friendly and understanding. She literally saw me grow up while working in the company. When I went through a rough patch personally, she would send me quotes to encourage me. Her compassion is something I really admire and respect.

Share something people don’t know about you.

I love to read. My favourite author is Cecelia Ahern.

 
Safiyyah

OUR BUSIEST OUTLETS are packed into the central business district (CBD). It’s where our quick service Bakery Cafés are well-positioned to offer you a healthy fare of sandwiches, design-your-own salads and soups to feed you throughout the day. As we commemorate our 20th year, we celebrate the people whose hands have made your experience at our CBD outlets a breeze.

 
Zetti  

Zetti Anwar
Store in-charge: Robinson Road

How long have you worked in Cedele?

It’ll be 10 years this July. I started out as a sandwich maker in our Novena Square outlet.

What is the most challenging part of your job?

Probably the morning rush and making sure everything gets done and is ready for lunch.

How would people describe your working style?

People don’t usually know that I can be quite fierce, especially when training staff. I feel like once I’ve committed to something I must do my best for it.

What’s your impression of Ms Cheng?

She’s a very successful entrepreneur and is also great with customers.

Ting Leong Yew
Area Manager for 10 outlets

 

How long have you been working at Cedele?

I’ve been working at Cedele for about 5 years. I actually started as a baker in the Central Kitchen, before transferring to the front line.

What is the best thing about working in Cedele?

I love the brand and the food. But more importantly, the teamwork here is not easy to get anywhere else.

How has working here changed you?

I used to be really hot tempered, but I think my temperament has changed over the years. I’ve learnt to seek out solutions instead of finding fault with people.

I’m extremely grateful that the bosses gave me the opportunity to start working in the service line, even though I had no prior experience.

Share a good memory of your time here.

Setting up our Star Vista outlet was quite a crazy and stressful time. It was just me and another colleague managing the new store. I was handling the queue, the cashier point and the bar all at once. I had to ask the other store managers for help – calling them to come over to help me after their shifts. It was tough but it made me realize how resilient I need to be when working in this industry.

As an Area Manager, do you have a favourite outlet?

I have a soft spot for our City Square branch (although it isn’t under my authority). I worked there for 1½ years and developed quite a good relationship with the landlord and regular customers.

 
Ting
felicia

Felicia Goh
Store Development Executive
(also known as Cedele’s fastest sandwich maker,
when she was working at the outlets)

 

When did you join Cedele?

I started in the company in 2002. It’s been 15 years!

What are your favourite Cedele foods?

I really like our Rosemary Chicken sandwich and our Red Velvet cake.

As someone doing store development, what exactly do you do?

I ensure that the bosses’ ideas for new stores come to pass, by working with contractors and other suppliers to set up a store. Other than opening stores, I also look into set up, maintenance and service.

What do you like best about working at Cedele?

There are always different challenges to overcome and new skills to learn. When I first started I was inexperienced, starting as a server in the outlet. Now I’m handling Store Development and even working on the outlets in Hong Kong. I’m thankful for how the bosses provide opportunities for growth.

Judy Lau
Store in-charge: Golden Shoe

How long have you worked here?

Twelve years. I remember my first day when I started in 2005. I underwent training at Frankel before going to our Great World City outlet in the afternoon to learn about our food and beverages.

Do you have a favourite Cedele cake?

I really like our Apple Nut Cheesecake, unfortunately it isn’t available at our stores anymore.

What do you like best about your work?

In the front line, we get to interact with customers from so many of walks of life. This interaction with customers and colleagues has taught me more about the world we live in.

How has working here changed you over the years?

Personally, I feel like I have mellowed over the years. I used to be quick tempered but I realise that when dealing with a younger staff, a firm stance doesn’t always work. Being in the F&B industry has also made me more aware of the food I buy and consume.

In your 12 years here, what are you most proud of?

I’m happy to have successfully set up some stores. I am also proud to pass on what I have learnt to new staff. Whatever I know, I give them. Training is like passing on the baton to the next generation.

Share 3 words to describe Ms Cheng.

She is attentive, energetic and an innovative cook.

Judy
   

EVERY SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS is built upon a solid foundation paved by its people who have toiled day in, day out. At the core of Cedele, we believe in feeding people well. As we turn 20 this July, we want to share the limelight with our daily heroes who have made the business of feeding people a dream come true. Discover the different pairs of hands who have contributed to this reality and join us in celebrating their hard work to mark this milestone.

Cake Department

Cedele cake dept

(L to R: Ko Khan Yeng and Lim Tian Seng, Junior Sous Chefs in the cake department)

 

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[On how a typical day in the cake department is like]: "We create many, many cakes a day. It’s a team effort, because everyone plays a part in every step of production.”

 

Ko Khan Yeng
(also known as Ah Yeng)
Junior Sous Chef (Cake department)

 

How long have you worked here and what attracted you to this job?

I have been here for 6 years. Cedele’s ethos for healthier food options was one reason why I joined the company.

What have you gained from your time in Cedele?

A second family! It’s like a family environment here. I’ve also learnt skills like how to manage a team, and have also grown personally, character-wise. And of course, I’ve learnt a healthier way of baking.

Which cakes are you most proud of?

The Christmas log cakes. It’s a time for me to brainstorm with Ms Cheng and be innovative when making decisions with regards to the flavours for the year.

Share something that people don’t know about you.

Before baking, I did some farming back in Malaysia. I was in charge of digging up sweet potatoes.

 
  Cedele baker ah yeng
Cedele baker ah lim

Lim Tian Seng
(goes by “Ah Lim”)
Junior Sous Chef (Cake department)

What good memories do you savour of your time in Cedele?

I’ve only been here 2 years but I will always remember my colleagues, how we worked and fought battles together.

What’s your favourite Cedele cake?

I really like our Chocolate Banana Espresso cake. [Click here to watch Ah Lim put finishing touches on this cake!]

Is there a busy period in the year?

Yes! Christmas season is the most challenging period because we get lots of orders and the cakes are usually more complex to make.

How have you grown into your role as a Junior Sous Chef in the cake department?

I’ve become more effective in managing the department and handling the more administrative stuff like scheduling.

 

Bread Department

cedele baker eric

Eric Tay
Baker Chef
(in charge of bread department)

How long have you been working here?

I have been here for 12 years, but I’ve been a baker for over 20 years.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Honestly, I like the challenge. I also like when I work with Ms Cheng to come up with the new breads.

How is a typical day in the bread department like and when is the busiest period in the year?

Because of the amount of bread we produce daily, the team makes them in two shifts. Easter is our busiest period of the year because we are constantly producing hot cross buns to meet the demand.

What have you learnt from your time at Cedele?

It’s important to stay humble. If you’re managing a team, you need to set an example for them to follow.

 

Hot Kitchen

Connie Pang
Head of Hot Kitchen

How was your first day of work at Cedele?

I actually started as a baker in Cedele, 14 years ago. I spent 3 months working in the bread department before moving on to the hot kitchen.

How have you changed since you started working here?

I came in as a blank slate, not knowing any skills. I’ve learnt a lot in my time here. I still remember the first soup I learnt to cook was our Mushroom soup. [Click here to watch Connie prepare some mushroom soup!]

Which product are you especially proud of?

Actually I’m proud of how far our Chinese New Year Pineapple Pockets have come. The demand for it has multiplied since when we first started. It’s so satisfying!

Share some good memories you’ve had of your time here.

It’s been exciting to work with Ms Cheng over the years. When I started out, there were less outlets and she would be the one teaching me recipes in the kitchen. She also knows when to have fun, and how to appreciate her workers after a particularly tough period of work.

How would you describe Ms Cheng?

She is accommodating and encourages growth. She even attended when I graduated with a diploma in Baking years ago.

cedele chef connie

Warehouse

“It’s quite amazing to think that all that Ms Cheng dreamed of for Cedele years ago has come true!”

image

Mizan Abd. Jalil
(affectionately known as Aunty Mizan)
Warehouse assistant

How was your first day at Cedele?

I started as a kitchen helper 17 years ago, making salads for 3 outlets. Then there was less than 10 staff members in the company.

What’s the best thing about working at Cedele?

The flexible working hours and a good boss who is considerate. Ms Cheng even visited my husband when he was in the hospital.

Share a good memory of working in Cedele.

Back when there was much less staff in Cedele, I would cook lunch (Mee Rebus, Mee Siam, Rendang etc.) every day for everyone.

Share something people don’t know about you.

Before working at Cedele, I worked as a machinist at Singapore Aerospace Manufacturing for 7 years.

rosemary chicken

"I am also proud of this sandwich [Rosemary Chicken] because when it was first introduced in 1999 in the CBD area, many of the sandwiches available then were mostly processed. But ours was and continues to be made from scratch, using a rather long process. I’m thankful and proud of our team for having the patience and integrity to continue making it this way."

This month marks the 20th year since our founder, Ms Yeap Cheng Guat started The Bakery Depot along Upper East Coast road. What began as a simple desire to make honest food has turned into a fulfilling journey of creating nourishing eats for your wellbeing.

To celebrate this exciting journey, we're zooming in on the people who make Cedele what it is today. We're taking a look at the hands that feed you. First, we sit down with our founder, affectionately know to most as Ms Cheng, to understand what inspired Cedele and what she envisions for the future.

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Before you started The Bakery Depot [Cedele’s first outlet], you were working in MNCs. What inspired you to start working in the food industry and eventually set up Cedele? 

Since my college days in the US, I was always cooking or baking for my friends. I’d make shortbread and eggrolls to sell on the side for some extra money. Or we’d have warm steamboat in the cold winter nights. Even when I started working, I’d bake brownies or cookies for my colleagues and they would comment that I should start a bakery.

One colleague in particular stuck a post-it note on my desk when he was going away for a short holiday. It said "The best ideas are in the graveyard, so don’t keep yours there." That gave me a much needed push to be brave and follow my dreams to open a bakery.

Cedele founder

What has been the greatest challenge in starting and running Cedele? 

Honestly, I find the greatest challenge over the years has been to collect a group of people who can work together and run the business coherently. The team we currently have is very special to me. Many of them have been with Cedele for many years. I hope that working with us through the years would give them positive attitudes to life.

If you could pick one Cedele dish you are most proud of, what would it be? 

[Laughs] This is such a difficult question! I think it will be our Rosemary Chicken Sandwich. I came up with the recipe around Christmas and was inspired by the flavours common to Thanksgiving in the States. I am also proud of this sandwich because when it was first introduced in 1999 in the CBD area, many of the sandwiches available then were mostly processed. But ours was and continues to be made from scratch, using a rather long process. I’m thankful and proud of our team for having the patience and integrity to continue making it this way. The sandwich is single-minded in flavour and exemplifies what real food is all about.

What is one lesson you’ve learnt from running Cedele? 

In the many years of running Cedele, one of the greatest lessons I've learnt has been to listen. Through the years I have met many amazing people, many of whom have indirectly become my life coaches. Some have taught me about business, about managing my emotions and even encouraged me to go against the grain and pursue my dream. I am extremely grateful to each one of them. They have taught me about life and have inspired me to live by these words: "be kind and help others".

Where do you draw inspiration for new products/food? Any culinary inspirations? 

Inspiration is infinite, it’s really everywhere. Since the early years of Cedele, I have been drawing inspiration from my interaction with customers. But specifically, I find myself drawn to personal stories about food that people prepare from the heart. It can be a home baker’s blog or a cookbook that explains the coming together of different cultures and flavours. I believe food is meant to communicate oneness.

[What about chefs who inspire you?] Oh, I really admire Nigel Slater. I think I have all his books. I would really love to cook for him one day.

What are your future dreams for Cedele? 

I hope that Cedele will become synonymous with eating healthier and taking care of oneself. For 20 years I have promised myself that what we serve must be as good as how I would feed my own family and friends. We want to continue upholding that in the future, to be cooking and respecting food as it should be enjoyed and eaten.

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Want to go behind the scenes? We find out some kitchen secrets chatting with the people behind all that moreish goodness at Cedele.

We've got surprises in store for you to show our thanks for your support over the last two decades. Find out how we’re celebrating by following us on Facebook and Instagram.