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Bennison's Bakery 13th Annual Paczki Eating Contest



Get ready for the ultimate paczki-eating showdown happening this Saturday! Secure your spot in the competition and indulge in the festivities. As a bonus, all participants will receive a complimentary shirt to commemorate the delicious challenge. Snag yours for just $25 at their in-store location.

But it’s not just about devouring paczki; it’s also about making a positive impact. This year, we’re proud to announce that a portion of our Fat Tuesday paczki sales will be donated to Border Tails Rescue. So, come hungry, grab a shirt, and join us in supporting a great cause while savoring the sweet taste of victory!

Larry Bennison brought his baking expertise to Evanston from Janesville, Wisconsin, in 1938. Rooted in his “Dairy State” origins, Larry’s commitment to quality was reflected in the bakery’s offerings, featuring ingredients like cream, real butter, fresh buttermilk, and freshly cracked eggs. In 1967, Guy Downer, initially a coffee supplier to Bennison’s, acquired the bakery from the Bennison family. Building on Larry Bennison’s Bakery legacy, Guy expanded the product line while upholding the esteemed standards of quality.

Guy’s son, Jory, joined the business in 1975. Learning the craft from his father and honing his skills through culinary school, Jory earned the prestigious title of Certified Master Baker from the Retail Bakery Association. In 2005, he elevated Bennison’s reputation on the global stage by winning the grand prize at the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie in Paris.

The bakery welcomed a third generation in 2009 when Jory’s son, Guy Jr., joined after completing studies at Southern Methodist University and the Akademie Deutsches Bäckerhandwerk in Weinheim, Germany. The Downer family takes immense pride in maintaining the high-quality image instilled by Larry Bennison. Despite advancements, Guy and Jory still wear flour-covered shoes, a testament to their hands-on commitment.

Bennison’s dedication to quality persists with overnight baking ensuring freshness daily. The devil’s food cake with liquid buttermilk and pumpkin pie made with fresh eggs and whole milk remain unchanged, reflecting a commitment to traditional methods. Yeast doughs are meticulously crafted, given ample fermentation time to develop distinct flavors and characteristics—a practice that sets Bennison’s apart in a world that often resorts to shortcuts.

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