When Fat Tuesday rolls around next year, there may or may not be a 20th Annual paczki-eating contest at 317 Main St. in Ansonia — and if there is, the joint hosting the celebration of the giant, jelly-filled Polish pastries may or may not still be called Eddy’s Bake Shop.
But either way, the Ciocca family, which has built Eddy’s Bake Shop, which it took over 53 years ago, into one of the longest-running and most celebrated baking juggernauts in the Valley — and for that matter the state of Connecticut — will be gone. Connecticut Magazine named it the state’s best bakery in its annual “Best of Connecticut” lineup last year.
Twin brothers Paul and Mike Ciocca, who have been part of the heart and soul of the place since their parents, Americo and Janine Ciocca, took it over in 1967 when the guys were both 7 years old, will retire effective Aug. 27.
“We’re tired of working 70-to-80 hours a week,” said Paul Ciocca as a steady steam of customers came in Saturday afternoon for their doughnuts, chocolate drop cookies, cannolis and more elaborate cakes and such — not to mention the rye bread, with or without seeds, that Eddy’s is famous for.
“I don’t hate what I did. But I don’t like the hours,” Ciocca said.
“It’s been a long time. I’ve been here since my dad took over,” Paul Ciocca said. “I was 7 years old.”
Five decades later, “I’m still here,” he said.
Word has been filtering out to Eddy’s legion of customers for about a month now, he said, and a large percentage of the customers know at this…
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