Our first priority is flavor, which means we use the highest quality ingredients available. Ethical, organic, humane, pastured, non GMO, and local are all ideal adjectives to describe our ingredients. Sometimes local isn’t the most sustainable. Sometimes non-organic is better than organic if it has to be flown here. We get to know the farms and businesses from which we purchase so that we can make the most reasonable choices. You can rest assured that we are choosing ingredients based on what we would feed ourselves and our families.
Our organic wheat flours come from Central Milling in Logan, Utah. It’s owned by the Giusto family who are renowned bakers, millers, and farmers. Their mill is powered from electricity generated by their own water turbine. Ben VanderWeele of VanderWeele Farms, in Palmer Alaska has been experimenting with growing wheat and it's going really well. We all agree Ben’s Alaskan wheat (like everything grown in Alaska) is the best we’ve ever tasted. We mill it fresh, minutes before we hydrate it to lock in all of the nutrients before they are oxidized. We then ferment it for 18 hours to free up even more of the nutrition available from the grain. It makes for the sweetest whole grain bread we’ve ever had. It’ll definitely add a skip to your step. We also like to support farms that are preserving heritage grains. Brooke and Sam Lucy of Bluebird Grain Farms, in Winthrop Washington are doing just that. They grow heirloom grains like Emmer and Einkorn. These grasses are the strains found growing wild in the fertile crescent thousands of years ago. Anthropologists believe Emmer and Einka are among the primary factors that led hunter/gatherers to settle down and form communities. Besides the cultural impact, they taste amazing: full bodied with robust nutritional value.
Organic Alaskan Produce and Meat
In Alaska, we enjoy some of the finest produce in the world. Sara and River Bean at Arctic Organics provide us with what we think is the best of the best. All summer they grow us fresh greens and herbs for our sandwiches and a variety of beautiful vegetables for our focaccias. The rest of the year they steadily supply us with their root vegetables: turnips, beets, carrots, potatoes, cabbage, and kohlrabi. The Beans are stewards of the land. During the long, dark winter months until the ground thaws and things begin to grow, we buy fresh greens and basil through Seeds of Change, here in Anchorage. They grow indoor hydroponics all year to keep our spirits up in January! We have the greatest mushroom guy you could ask for. Paul Benson at Cappricio Specialties brings us the most delicious fungus for our soups and focaccias. During Summer and Fall, he forages in his top secret spots nearby in Girdwood for wild mushrooms, fiddleheads, and devil’s club shoots. S.J. Klein at Alaska Sprouts makes incredibly fresh tofu for our tofu banh mi and deliciously fresh sprouts for our sandwiches year round. A large portion of our eggs come from Fry's Funny Farm in Wasilla, AK. Michael Fry thought that 700 layers would provide his kids with enough money to forgo working at Mcdonalds. Every Friday they give us what the chickens laid and we give them all of our produce scraps and egg shells from the week. Mike puts it in a wood chipper and supplements a large portion of his chicken feed with it.
Artisan Cheese + butter
In our cheese case, you can find a variety of styles from pacific northwest creameries that have left an impression on us in our travels. Cowgirl Creamery in Point Reyes Station, California, Marin French Cheese Company in Petaluma, California, and Mt. Townsend Creamery in Port Townsend, Washington can always be found. We also fell in love with the cultured butters from Vermont Creamery. We enjoy it spread thick on a slice of our bread.
Organic fair-trade COFFEE
Coffee is something that is near and dear to our hearts. We are bakers, however, so we don’t try and make espresso. We would never be satisfied and it would take our attention away from baked goods. Instead we make the best drip coffee we know. Michael McGuire at K Bay Caffe in Homer, Alaska is a nationally recognized roaster of organic, single origin, fair trade coffee. He is also a good person, purchasing his coffee from organic co-ops from around the world, and working hard on positive community growth in Homer.