I learned about Bâtard Bakery on Fraser Street in Vancouver from a lovely woman I met at the Anna Olson cookbook signing last fall. She actually works at Bâtard as a baker and invited me to come visit.
I don’t know if you have heard but Vancouver got walloped over the winter with tons of snow. It was not until recently that I believed spring was finally here but as soon as I thought winter was finally gone I arranged for a day to come and visit Bâtard Bakery at 3958 Fraser Street between East 23rd and 24th Avenue.
The location is divided up into three sections: shopping, paying/ordering and sitting. I entered at the market place and was blown away! So many foodie treasures, I could have spent hours looking at everything.
Of course my heart immediately melted at these Merry Mushroom salt and pepper shakers my mom used to have. I could not believe it when I saw them there. Oh I almost went home with them. Talk about serendipitously making me feel 100% at home.
There were fancy cake pans and bakery molds that are now on my wishlist.
Just about every kind of infused vinegar you can think of.
If you are a fan of preserves you can get a giant jar of these beautiful Okanagan Peaches.
Yes! I normally buy my Madagascar vanilla bean paste online. Now I do not have to!
Look at the range of floral waters that are available. Wonderful!
I loved the old school feeling of this part of Bâtard. It made me feel like I was a gourmand shopping for that perfect foodie treasure in Paris.
You could also pick up something to eat for lunch, pepperoni sticks, cheeses and apparently marinated seafood. Wow!
As I looked at the beautiful artisan loaves of breads and the baking jewels on display I noticed the lack of a certain trendy word…
NOTHING here was gluten-free! I have to say, that made me smile.
When I asked about it I was told that the owners try and stay away from trends and focus on what they like to make.
In fact on their website they write, “People say we are old fashioned. We hope so!”
A cafe after my own heart.
From the constant stream of people coming in and out of the cafe it was clear I was not the only one who appreciated the old world way of making and enjoying food at Bâtard. In just a couple of years since opening, the locals have embraced this cafe and people from all over the outlying regions come and load up on foodie supplies.
I want to thank my friend for not only indulging in my overwhelming excitement at seeing Anna Olson back in October but for the invitation to come visit her place of work. And what wonderful work they do.
So what did I go home with? Alas, I left the salt and pepper shakers (they are haunting me still) and bought an Earl Grey Lemon Short Bread cookie and…
Freeze dried strawberries! I am still in shock they had these. I need them for my foodie memoir and thought I would have to resort to buying online.
Sadly my cookie was so fragile it was in a million pieces by the time I got home but they were delicious pieces! The Earl Grey was very pronounced (yay, not subtle) and worked beautifully with the lemon flavour.
One More Thing
If you are visiting Vancouver and need a place to stay, they even have a one bedroom suite available to stay at above the bakery, “Enjoy this little slice of France right here in our beautiful city.”
For those of lucky enough to live here, you can do the same by going for a coffee at Bâtard. I intend to do this. Often.