By Taylor Smith
Located in the neighborhood of German Village, just south of downtown Columbus, is Pistacia Vera. This newly converted building is home to a pastry kitchen and cafe. This bakery was once a residential home, but thanks to Jonathan Barnes Architecture and Design firm, it is now a lovely bakery that is earning a lot of credit for the work done. In 2009 Jonathan Barnes Architecture and Design (JBAD) firm was recognized for Pistacia Vera with an AIA of Columbus Merit Award.
This 120-year-old building was renovated in order to hold an artisan pastry kitchen and retail area. Prior to the most recent renovation, there was an addition onto the original building in order to accommodate Reiner’s Bakery in the 1930’s. Reiner’s bakery was an addition onto the western end of the building, and one can still see the Reiner’s sign there today. So, Pistacia Vera was not technically the first bakery to occupy this space. For the most recent renovation of the 120-year-old building, there were major modifications to the interior in order to accommodate the needs and wishes of the present owners of Pistacia Vera, who are siblings Spencer Budros and Anne Fletcher. They grew up in Columbus, Ohio and aimed to create a dessert destination in their hometown.
This dessert destination included the precise placement of the pastry equipment for electrical and ventilation purposes. The exterior of the building was preserved and restored while the original structure was modified dramatically. The interior of the building was rebuilt to include an open two-story space, along with a mezzanine. In order to do this, the removal of the second floor was done. A retail area with display cases and also present in the floor plan. The materials used were chosen to express the simple but sophisticated taste of the owners. The materials used were ebonized wood, marble, Venetian plaster along with others. The two-story back wall is finished with the high-gloss Venetian plaster, while the ebonized wood and marble are used in the display cases.
When looking at the exterior of the building, one can tell the old from the new. The renovation really sought to make a connection between the old and the new, while keeping a minimalist approach to it. The brick exterior shows the history of the building and the common theme of all of the buildings in the German Village. The bottom half of the building holds huge windows and a concrete façade. When looking at the eastern elevation of the building, one can tell exactly what is new and what is old. The left most, one story part of the building is a new addition, along with the new concrete façade.
This is an amazing renovation when looking at all of the factors that go into remodeling such an old structure. First, having to restore a 120-year-old building is difficult enough, then JBAD had to incorporate the specifics of the pastry kitchen and the requests from the owners into the remodel, but looking at the finished product it is a job well done.
“About.” Pistacia Vera. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2015.
“Sell.” JBAD RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2015.
“2009 Design Awards.” AIA Columbus. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Nov. 2015.