There’s little from the outside of Bread & Co., a new “Artisan Bakery” in Winter Park, that gives a clue as to what’s inside. Yes, there is bread, as well as other baked goods. But they may not be what you expect.
That’s because Bread & Co. is largely a Korean bakery. It occupies a space that for a very brief time last year was home to Wonton Asian Kitchen. The same owners shut down the quick-serve hot-food operation and revamped the space for a bakery.
There’s more room here than it needs, and the effect of the few baked goods displayed in the austerely decorated urbanesque space, with exposed brick walls, metal ductwork and track lighting, is reminiscent of Soho boutiques that exhibit one or two blouses or a pair of shoes in designer clothing stores.
There’s a bit more than that here, and much of it is tempting. And quite a bit of it is savory, such as the Leaf Shape Sausage Bread, a cross between a tart and a flatbread with onions, sausage and a surprisingly sweet sauce that was really quite tasty. It was displayed next to something more simply called Sausage Bread, which had a sausage on a stick wrapped with breading.
Lunch Bread was a sandwich with meats and Salada Bread seemed to have tuna or egg salad between the buns.
I had wanted to try a loaf of ciabatta, but the only ciabattas available were stuffed with meats or other accouterments.
On both of my visits I grabbed a baguette to take home. Both of them were disappointing. The texture was loose and airy and they tasted, frankly, stale.
I was intrigued by a Chestnut Bread, a Korean specialty, but it, too, was a bit dry for my Western palate. That can at least partially be attributed to the Korean style of pastries.
On one visit I was offered a small bag of something akin to doughnut holes as a thank you for shopping there. Again, not as sweet as you expect them to be, but quite nice while sipping a cup of coffee in the morning.
The folks running the place are very friendly and welcoming. And they really really want you to take a tray and a pair of tongs with you to help yourself to the various breads and sandwiches.
There is also a lovely display of cakes and pies in a glass display case that I assume you may not help yourself to.
I think it’s terrific to have a Korean bakery of this quality. Perhaps I’m asking too much for it to also offer a decent baguette. But then it is called Bread & Co.
Bread & Co. is at 1230 W. Fairbanks Ave., Orlando. It is open daily. It does not have a published phone number or a website.