Rising Star Baker Autumn Moultrie of Back Alley Bread - Biography

Brooklyn, NY

November 2020


For Bakers Autumn Moultrie and Brian Villanueva, nothing is more homey than some fresh bread, still warm from the oven. The couple are both from Los Angeles, where they unknowingly attended rival high schools. She left the state for culinary school at the College of Southern Nevada; he stayed close to home at California State Polytechnic University, where he studied hospitality management. In Las Vegas, Moultrie cooked at Giada, followed by Carbone and Momofuku Las Vegas. In 2017, Moultrie moved to New York to open Mario Carbone’s The Grill as chef de tournant. 

Villanueva stuck around in California, where he was hired as a line cook at Nancy Silverton’s Mozzaplex. During his five-year tenure, he climbed the ladder to sous chef. Villanueva moved across the country for a role at Blue Hill before moving on to become chef de cuisine at the Chefs Club pop-up. A Giada De Laurentiis pop-up at Chefs Club finally brought him and Moultrie together. She was focused on cooking, but Villanueva’s charms and persistence won out.

When COVID-19 hit, Villanueva was in the banquet kitchen at Stone Barns, and Moultrie had broken into food styling. As work dried up, she started baking out of nervousness, and Back Alley Bread was born out of their Ditmas Park apartment. Moultrie and Villanueva bake and hand-deliver their bread and baked items in Brooklyn. Their products are influenced by their childhoods—from sourdough loaves inspired by a hometown grocery store to Moultrie’s great-aunt’s biscuit recipe—but show off the skill of true professionals.