The Historic Arnott Bakehouse is home to Morpeth Sourdough shop and licensed bistro.
Baking and quality go hand-in-hand with the name Arnott. Back in 1847, William Arnott, a baker and confectioner, arrived in Morpeth from Scotland and began baking sourdough bread. Later in 1865, he moved into Newcastle and began baking biscuits and cakes. With Arnott's Biscuits now celebrating over 150 years of continuous baking in Australia, we can imagine William would be filled with pride if he were alive today.
Now to learn that his great great great grandson Stephen Arnott had returned to Morpeth in 2003, to the same bakehouse making sourdough bread, would have been beyond his wildest dreams. Just goes to show baking is truly in the blood of this family.
This site in Morpeth is of historical significance to the colony of New South Wales, as the first bakehouse in this newly established river port. Built in the 1830's, the shopfront and residence were one of the first allotments and buildings in this new township. About 20 years later the historic bakehouse was built, once the home and workplace of the Arnotts. The adjoining 'roomy yard' on the property housed the large stables, soon to be rebuilt.
This c.1850 bakehouse, a rare and authentic industrial building, now fully restored, is said to be the oldest original Scotch oven in the Country.
Stephen, driven by the baking success of his forebears, together with his wife Allison, a Master of Food Microbiology returned to Morpeth to the family's origins of baking sourdough. It was an instant success and there is the beginnings of Morpeth Sourdough.