For more than 33 years, Granny's Bakery, now named Granny B's, has been serving up delicious cakes, pastries and sub sandwiches in Spindale. "We named it Granny's before I was a grandmother." said Aleta 'Granny' Nichols.
"We started the business in 1985." said James Nichols, of the family owned and operated long time favorite in the county. "We started out making dough nuts and cakes, and in time, added the world class subs."
The couple, originally from the Hendersonville area, were high school sweethearts. Having been married for some 56 years, they know a thing or two about longevity. "It's a lot of hard work." said Aleta on working long hours and keeping the business going. Prior to opening the bakery, they had other businesses in the food service industry, but the 'Granny's' we all know and love has been a staple in Spindale a long time. "We've seen a lot of changes...we watched them build Spindale Elementary School across the street." said James.
On how they survived the economic downturn in the county and the exile of the textile industry, Aleta tells us, "By the grace of God. It was rough, and I prayed about it everyday." That was when the business introduced sub sandwiches to their menu. "I had purchased a slicing machine," said James, "I had stored it in the back. It was brand new and still in the box so I pulled it out." And the rest, as they say, is history.
"One thing we offer that is unique to the area is our Daylight Donuts." said James. Daylight Donuts is a Tulsa, Oklahoma based chain of dough nut shops, founded in 1954 and has approximately 1,000 locations in 13 countries. You would have to drive about an hour away to find another Daylight Donut as they are mostly sold in malls and other high traffic locations. And then, there are the subs. Top quality ingredients and fresh vegetables ensure your satisfaction. Served with pickle spears and banana peppers, this sandwich is every sub lovers dream.
With no plans to retire, the couple is still going strong and enjoying their new location at 322 West Main Street in Spindale. Since their sub sandwiches are so popular, they decided to change the name from Granny's Bakery to Granny B's, but the quality is the same.
When she's not baking, Aleta enjoys gardening, taking care of her chickens, and talking to her great granddaughter. "I have 3 granddaughters and one great granddaughter." says Aleta as her eyes light up. "I also like to read. I read my Bible and true stories about the miracles God performs in the lives of others." James tells us, "I can't remember when we had a real vacation, but when I'm not working I enjoy prospecting for gold, camping, flying my plane, and aggravating Granny."
The Nichols invite you all to come by and visit them in their new store. You might just catch James feeding the 20 year old potted rain tree. "I feed it a dough nut once a week." chuckles James.
Thank you, James and Aleta. Thank you for sticking in there when competition and tough times challenged you. For years, your sandwiches and pastries have been unmatched in quality and flavor. We, your long time customers, are happy you did and hope you continue for many years to come.