NEW ORLEANS — The company that makes the popular Hubig's snack pies plans to open a new bakery in New Orleans to replace one demolished by a fire last year.
Members of the City Planning Commission voted this week to approve Simon Hubig Pie Co.'s plan to open a bakery in a location on the border of the Faubourg Marigny and Bywater neighborhoods.
Hubig's old bakery in the Marigny was completely gutted by a fire that broke out on July 27, 2012.
Ideally Hubig's Pies will be on store shelves again within a year, said Drew Ramsey, a member of one of the two families that owns the brand.
The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/15blAna ) three locations are being eyed: the company's former site in the Marigny that housed Hubig's since 1921; a nearby vacant plot owned by the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts Institute and land owned by the Lighthouse for the Blind, uptown near the Mississippi River.
The Times-Picayune reports (http://bit.ly/17tM7Ac) that Hubig's hasn't signed a purchase agreement for the new site yet because its owners are waiting for the city to approve a permit.
While the City Planning Commission has voted to approve a conditional-use permit to allow construction on the NOCCA site, Ramsey told The Advocate on Wednesday that no decision has been made yet in regard to where the next factory will be.
Each site has its pros and cons, Ramsey said. A decision on a site should be made in the coming months, but there is no firm timeline.
"We need to think strategically," he said. "We want to get back into business."
Since the fire, the company has rented space at the Lighthouse for the Blind's office and worked to keep in touch with bakery employees, suppliers and store managers in anticipation of the eventual return of the fried treats. There also have been some hassles with getting what the company thinks is the right amount of insurance money, said Ramsey, who has traveled the country searching for the special equipment used to make the wedge-shaped pies.
He said the company could retrofit space at the Lighthouse for the Blind, or it could build a new factory on the nonprofit's land. But adding a for-profit business into a nonprofit's home base is not without its own set of complications, Ramsey said.
There are also various issues to consider with the bakery's former site on Dauphine Street, as well as the Press Street location.
"We're leaning toward what would be best for Hubig's," he said.
Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com