Edmonton's gorgeous Strathcona neighbourhood is home to a celebrated artisinal, family-owned bakery. Every week from Tuesday through Saturday, Edmontonians from every corner of the city drop by to wait their turns eagerly, knowing that the bakers are serious about European-style bread. The bakers' hands are full; they're grinding wheat, mixing, folding dough, dreaming of rye and raisins, and greeting customers by their first names.
Sourdough bread, which is easy to fall in love with, takes the spotlight. The bakers explain that this variety of bread, also known as "Pain au levain", "has a unique appearance, flavour and aroma that is distinctive and irresistible. Like wild fruit, these breads offer a concentrated flavour and character. The levain must be carefully nurtured and cultivated- its very essence is life".
Yvan Chartrand, the owner of the award-winning bakery, has been featured showing everyone how it's done on CTV. Time and time again, Edmontonians give the bakery five star reviews. In an explanatory video about the bakery, Chartrand shares the story of Ozzy Osbourne's endorsement of their sourdough bread. The Edmonton Sun recently ranked the bakery as one of Edmonton's best.
A unique feature of the bakery is that they carry a selection of fine cheeses, including a comprehensive list of special request cheeses. This is the right bakery for those who are looking to pair cuisine with wine, impress friends with a heavenly hors d'oeuvre platter, or take snacks/sandwiches/soup to the next level. Visit their website, yvanchartrand.com, and learn more. It's well worthwhile to browse the bread gallery. The olive with sundried tomatoes looks absolutely divine, as does the Seigle aux Fruits. These guys use organic, unadulterated ingredients. Local products are imperative. The importance of the fermentation process is well respected, and milling is done at the bakery.
The restaurant is located in the very heart of Edmonton, just a couple of blocks west of the north end of the Mill Creek Ravine. It's also not far south
of the Nellie McLung park on the North Saskatchewan River. Choosing a loaf of delectable bread and a wheel of gourmet Canadian cheese just might be one of the highlights of a day spent out on the town or in nature on a crisp Saturday. Grabbing a loaf of caraway rye and a loaf of potato sourdough after a long, snowy, windy day will transform a mid-week comfort food dinner into a gourmet European dining experience.
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