This sprouted rye redefines moisture in a loaf. More than dough, cutting open this dense, golden loaf reveals an explosion of seeds – lots of sprouted rye, (maybe some caraway?) and something that looks like pumpkin seeds. These seeds are held together by a dough that is so moist that it almost seems like its been soaked in preparation for french toast. When we ask the hostess where we can buy the bread, she directs us to Tartine Bakery, but I've rushed to Tartine too many times to make it there by 5 PM for a loaf of country bread (after wondering I should branch out and get the sesame, walnut, or olive), to know that this sprouted rye is actually not available there.
Chef Nicolaus Balla came out from the kitchen when he hears someone wants to talk about the bread, which he offers to sell me (on the underground brunch black market) for $8. In a way that is at once serious, eager and refreshingly relaxed, Balla says he's glad I like the bread and tells me that it gets better with age: “It's best on its fourth day.” I'll admit I was dubious until I cut myself a slice of the dwindling loaf four days later to find the same freshness and a more potent flavor in the sprouted seeds.