Wow! I’ve had a crazy busy week!
While I’ve missed blogging quite a bit, I’ve had a great time hanging out with friends and seeing concerts.
Now that I’m back, I need to let you in on all of the things that have been going on this last week. The first up, being Maya’s visit from Japan. As you know, I spent the Saturday before last at her parent’s home partaking in Belizean cuisine. In addition to that evening we also ran the Run Wild for a Child 5K the next morning. While I will certainly tell you all about the 5K, I first thought I’d talk about what we did on Tuesday.
As both of us were free, we decided to spend Tuesday hanging out. I got off to a stressful start, as I had to do laundry and clean up my apartment as it was the only day off before I went on my trip. Due to this, we ended up meeting later than planned. We still managed to get in a fair bit of fun just the same. We started off, of course, at the Ferry Building.
We all know what this is.
After we got some coffee we wandered around the Tuesday farmer’s market. If you followed the posts of any of the bloggers that attended Food Buzz, you probably know all about the Ferry Building’s farmer’s market. It’s pretty amazing. The bloggers all showed you what the Saturday market is like. The Saturday market is the BIG market. It has the most vendors present and there’s much more to see, buy and sample. I can never make it to the Saturday markets, however, because I work Saturday mornings. Instead, I often hit up the Tuesday or Thursday lunch time markets.
We ate about a billion samples of almonds and various nut brittles from the G. L. Alfieri Farms stand. Seriously. My favorite stand at the farmer’s market, hands down. We pretty much spent all of our market money right there. Maya bought tons of brittle for both her own stash and I would assume also as omiyage. We also bought a container of fudge to split. I don’t remember specifically the flavor…I’m thinking it was a vanilla mocha? I didn’t keep the packaging when I divvied it up. Just know that it tasted like coffee and was (and still is, as I still have a bit…) unbelievably delicious.
After some shopping around at the jewelry stands, we hopped on BART and headed to Oakland. Why, you ask? To go to the Bay Area’s only Great Harvest location!
Both Maya and I have read a lot about Great Harvest breads, most notably on KERF, but on the blogs of many others as well. Since I had just recently discovered that there was in fact a location nearby, I proposed it as an outing we could do together while she was in town. I had never been to this part of Oakland before, so I was hoping it would be easy to locate the bakery from the Rockridge BART station. It turned out to be really easy. Less than a 5 minute walk and we were there.
Once we were inside we sort of stood there overwhelmed for a moment. Does that ever happen to you? It happens to me all of the time. I go into a restaurant, store or whatever for the first time and once I see the menu I just stand there trying to take everything in. I want to make the right purchases. I want to get the most out of whatever experience I’m having. In this case, I wanted to make sure I picked up the right selection of bread, since I don’t come to the east bay all that often.
After the initial freeze passed, we decided to order half sandwiches. We figured that each of us would get a different sandwich and then we would split them, each of us getting a quarter of each type. A few moments of indecision and then we placed orders for 1/2 a chicken salad sandwich on Dakota and a turkey sandwich on Honey Whole Wheat.
They looked so pretty that we had to take lots of pictures of them. And each other.
Then it was time to split the sandwiches. We didn’t have a knife, nor were either of inclined to go inside and ask for one. I should have never been responsible for the division of these sandwiches….
Ooops. Not so pretty anymore!
In addition to picking up lunch, we also decided to buy some bread. I chose a loaf of Brown Bread and a loaf of Dakota. Maya and I sampled a couple of different breads….I believe Cinnamon Chip and Spelt. Both were excellent. She decided to pick up a loaf of Cinnamon Chip for her family to potentially use for french toast. She was interested in the Dakota as well, but since she was leaving for Wisconsin for a couple of days and then after that she would be heading back to Japan, it didn’t seem practical for her to buy a loaf for herself.
Bloggers are funny. They take pictures of bread. And make funny faces.
All in all, I think Great Harvest bread is pretty darned tasty. It’s dense (the bag with just the two loaves I bought was HEAVY), filling and flavorful. We both liked the Dakota best out of what I purchased…though after a couple more sandwiches, I’ve grown attached to the brown as well. I could definitely see myself heading across the bay once in awhile to pick up a loaf or two.
Believe it or not, this wasn’t even the end of our day! But I think I’ve covered enough for now.
What’s your favorite type of bread?