Bay Area bread favorites

One of the things I love is bread. Here are some of my bread faves at the moment:

Tartine bread- great bread, but too annoying to line up unless one reserved in advance. Country, sesame are all great. They use the same base for their bread so all the bread taste similar.strong text

Josey Baker- tiny bit less awesome than Tartine, but much more availability and I can get them delivered to my door. Like Tartine, all their bread seem similar but their toasted sesame is great.

Firebrand Artisan- also pretty solid. Firebrand use a wood-fire oven to bake their bread.

What are your favorites and where do you get them?

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It’s a type of bread . Focaccia from the Liguria Bakery .


Walnut levain from Acme (not the one with cranberries). I’ve always wanted to rig a side-by-side comparison with the walnut levain from Premiere Moisson in Montreal, to see who has the studlier version.

I’m basically a rustic bread kind of guy, but I do have a favorite French-style baguette, namely the one from Brioche Bakery on Columbus Ave.

Tartine sesame, porridge were my favorites, I was getting them through Good Eggs until it was discontinued due to Tartine’s move/expansion.

Then I started getting Pizzaiolo bread, it turns out I like their sesame better than Tartine’s sesame (less sour). Getting to Pizzaiolo between 8-12am is hard, even though I live in Oakland, so after a few weeks of being breadless…

I tried the porridge bread from Pain Bakery, offered through Good Eggs. The Pain bakers hail from Pizzaiolo and their bread is very close to Pizzaiolo’s and Tartine’s, and in my opinion, better than Firebrand or Josey Baker. And it’s super convenient.

Some other good places for bread that we’ve tried and liked:

  • Outerlands (yes the sell their bread at the restaurant)
  • M.H. Bread and Butter in San Anselmo has some great bread. Their bread & butter plate for $5 is totally worth it (compared to the $4 / $5 toast in SF)
  • Twentieth Century Cafe has some pretty good bread also
  • Della Fattoria @ the ferry plaza farmers market, i think you can get their bread @ fatted calf now


[quote=“dlobo, post:5, topic:2205”]
Della Fattoria @ the ferry plaza farmers market, i think you can get their bread @ fatted calf now
[/quote]I think Della Fattoria is also available at Bi-Rite

Unfortunately my memory is failing me- there is a walnut levain from either Firebrand or Della Fattoria (likely Firebrand) that’s also very good.

I don’t think I would go to Pizzaiolo at 12am for bread

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Oops, I meant 8am-12pm.

Our favorite baguette for the past several years is from Thorough Bread [Church near Market, SF], owned by the estimable Michel Suas. And, super cheap–last time I checked they were $1.50.

I used to go to Venetian Bakery at 3:00 AM drunk as a skunk for a hot-out-of-the-oven sourdough round. It was a great hangover preventer.


This week I had the Acme Walnut Levain for the 1st time in a year. I swore off of it due to the hard crust but it was amazing: nutty and buttery. Also good there are the Edible Schoolyard and the seasonal Pumpkin Loaf. And if you get there early enough, you can buy day-old loaves (usualy whole wheat and sourdough) for half price, a deal I’ve found hard to resist since it takes me week to eat a loaf anyway.

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I love a good, crusty sourdough and a nice baguette, but for comfort bread my current favorite is Metropolis Baking Company’s Grano Duro Round, which I get at Berkeley Bowl West. (They don’t have it at BB East.) It’s such a wonderful grown-up white bread for me, which a nice crust but also a very moist, flavorful interior that’s particularly good warmed with butter.

I generally don’t eat a lot of bread but I always make an exception at Outerlands.

The Epi (I think that is how it is spelled) made on Saturdays at Nightingale in Forestville. I dream of it.

How’s the bread at Wild Flour these days? At Red Bird?

We had an excellent fougasse. All you have to do is get there on the right days.

For some strange reason I don’t recall much about the Outerlands bread, though my wife reminded me that both I and she like the Outerlands bread much also. I think they are graduates of the Chad Robertson school of bread…

At Epicurean Trader (Bernal Heights, Cortland Ave.) for a bubbly tasting last night. I bought a loaf of bread made by the Midwife + the Baker. Really pricy, but a large loaf and incredibly good. Very crusty outside and gorgeous tender texture inside. The Baker of the couple teaches at SF Baking Institute–I am not surprised. Maybe not a regular purchase considering the price, but I’m impressed.

Firebrand is now distributed at Whole Foods. Saw it in Los Altos.