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Acme Bread at Ferry Marketplace: Report and Q

Carb Lover | Dec 12, 200405:09 PM

Limited to an hour, had a chance to make a cursory reconnaissance of the hyped marketplace in SF yesterday during lunchtime. Wanted to keep this thread focused on Acme, one of the few places I stopped at to pick up some goodies.

A good 20 people in front of me, but the line moved quickly. Perused their display breads, but didn't have a chance to really soak it all in before my turn to order. Ended up getting a regular-sized loaf of Levain Walnut, cute-looking Pain Epi, and a savory onion and olive tart made of puffed pastry. Total was $6+.

Didn't regret a single purchase. The pre-made tart was very fresh-tasting--onions were slowly caramelized, sprinkling of black olives provided nice pungency, puffed pastry was buttery and flakey. Only improvement would have been to have it fresh from the oven...and maybe laced w/ a few good anchovies. Pain Epi was basic, but offered some personality and comfort.

Didn't cut into walnut loaf until got home, but it was just as delicious as I remembered it to be the last time I had a bite (around 10 yrs. ago!!!). Crust was dark and deep, crumb had an earthy purple-brown hue, walnuts were abundant. If I could have only one bread for the rest of my life, this would be it.

Question #1: walnut bread flavor was similar to how I remembered, but texture seemed different, as if it was not as dense as it used to be 10 yrs. ago. Didn't see any other walnut loaf (besides the larger size), so is there a different one that has a denser texture, or has the recipe changed over the last 10 yrs?? Or has nothing changed and just my memory playing tricks due to increased age?

Question #2: what are hounds favorites at Acme so that I can branch out next time?? THANKS!

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