(NEW YORK) — A Brooklyn based bakery is proving that artisan bread is back on the rise.
Head baker Austin Hall at She Wolf Bakery told “Nightline” their luxe loaves are flying off the shelves this fall, with some selling for as much as $20 each.
Compared to breads made with commercial yeast, Hall said, “The amount of time involved is much greater,” in She Wolf’s process.
“I guess there’s a lot more hands involved, a lot fewer machines,” he added. “We’re also using organic flours … all of our whole grains are coming from New York state at this point.”
Their bread making is a multi-day process that starts with pre-fermentation, Hall explained. All natural yeast and companion bacteria have time to pre-digest the flour, which makes a variety of vitamins and minerals available to help enhance flavor and ultimately assist in digestion, according to the bakery’s website.
“Sometimes I never know if I have had a good day, until the next day, because you’re picking up halfway through the process,” he said.
The bakery offers a variety of loaves from sourdough to sprouted rye as well as baguettes, and the price tags on some loaves reflect the labor of love.
One of She Wolf’s most popular menu items, the Miche Loaf, sells for $20. The specialty large round French bread loaf is a blend of half-white and whole wheat flour baked longer resulting in its signature dark crust.
Operations manager Maxwell Bernstein who oversees the bakery’s market stands said he understands these prices may be more than people are used to paying for bread, and he aspires to make their loaves accessible to everyone.
“We don’t want to be a luxury,” he said. “I think once we convince people to try it they realize that there’s a lot of pride and a lot of work that goes into each loaf.”
And loyal customers don’t seem to need much convincing. One customer named Bill McAllister told “Nightline” that “the flavor of this bread and the texture is fantastic.”
Another customer, Jonathan Banayan, added, “There’s just something about cutting and hearing the crackling of the bread and just having it with a slice of butter simplicity’s perfect.”
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