Today I spent some time at Fresh Flours in Ballard, just the newest addition in an already unfairly bakery-heavy Ballard. (Unfair only because I don’t live there, you understand.) Rather than a producer of the strictly French variety like its Ballard neighbors, Besalu and Honore, FF turns out baked goods with a Japanese twist. Witness the green tea and azuki muffin, tall with a crusty top and studded with just the right number of azuki beans. The distinctly non-Japanese rosemary and parmesan scone was equally tasty, and I can’t wait to try the pain au chocolat next to see how it stacks up.
The interior of Fresh Flours is bright and airy, green bench seating and exposed brick along one wall with the back of the space open to the baking operation. It feels like a neighborhood spot, probably underscored on today’s visit as I stood in line behind James Weimann, co-owner of next door’s Bastille who stopped in to introduce himself and say hello. Now, isn’t that neighborly? I was also a fan of the very eclectic art on the walls, and interested to see on Fresh Flours’ website that they provide info on the artists featured at this location and at their first shop in Phinney. Speaking of which… I thought that I had seen the FF name around town and was told today that was indeed the case. Formerly a wholesale operation that sold to other coffee shops around the city, they will now focus entirely on their retail locations in Ballard and Phinney.
Fresh Flours was just one stop in a succession of coffee and pastry purveyors today: Uptown Espresso’s Belltown location, Bang Bang on Western and Honore in Ballard were all on the circuit. Don’t I pick the best places for meetings?