By Joe Grimm
Marco Dossena and Brianna Wynsma are the toast of the town.
The town is Trenary (rhymes with canary), and in 2019 the couple became operators and co-owners of the Trenary Home Bakery with Dossena’s mother, Nucci Cerioli.
The newlyweds are bringing fresh energy to the 90-plus-year-old tradition of Trenary Toast, the Upper Peninsula’s version of Finnish korppu, twice-baked dunking toast. It is a little sweet and a whole lot crunchy.
One TripAdvisor fan wrote, “The babies cut their teeth on it, and the old folks who don’t have many teeth left dunk it in their coffee.” With Trenary Toast dating back to 1928, it’s possible some of these babies and old folks are the same individuals.
The toast, packed by hand in hand-stamped brown paper bags, is as hard as a U.P. winter. It keeps forever (well, up to a year) and comes in cinnamon, cardamom, vanilla, plain and chocolate chip varieties. Northern Michigan University grads Dossena and Wynsma say they bought the bakery because they love the toast and are tweaking the product by adding flavors, but are not about to commit hardtack heresy. The basic recipe is the same as it was when Jorma Syrannen first started baking it.
The bakery houses a café, frequented for cinnamon rolls, scones and croissants. One breakfast choice is three slices of cinnamon Trenary Toast with local maple syrup.
Trenary is midway between Rapid River on Lake Michigan’s Little Bay de Noc and Munising on Lake Superior. For fans, the central U.P. is not too far to go for the dunkers, and there is plenty to do nearby, including Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, ice caves to explore in the winter and waterfalls to gape at in the summer.
And if you need another reason to be in the Trenary area, each year on the last Saturday of February, hundreds of spectators flock to the Trenary Outhouse Classic, a race of decorated outhouses pushed through town on skis. For information on the 27th run on Feb. 29, go to trenaryouthouseclassic.com.
You want to toast that? You betcha.
The bakery and café are open year-round, and baked goods are available from Trenary Home Bakery at trenaryhomebakery.com.