I may not have left the country, but I did have a taste of Switzerland last Wednesday, February 20th. In a departure from the usual brunch format, the Boston Brunchers got a special treat last week: a chance to tour the brand new facilities of the Swiss Bakers before they open. The Swiss Bakers already have a location in Reading, MA, a catering business and sales at farmers markets. Their new location, 168 Western Avenue, Allston, MA brings them within easy access of Bostonians. The entire family was on hand to give the Brunchers a tour of the facilities. The set up will have multiple locations to pickĀ  up food items as well as a smaller private room with a picturesque view of Switzerland for quieter guests. The Brunchers got a behind the scenes peak at the gorgeous kitchen space in the back. From the street I’d had no idea how far back the Bakery went! We were given generous tastes of many of the different items that will be featured on the menu from the Pretzel Baguette Sandwiches to the Chocolate Filled Croissants. My personal favorite had to be the Blueberry Berliner. The family kept stressing that they keep their food simple and healthy. As owner Thomas said “it’s not bread that makes you fat, it’s what you put on it.” And in that regard he keeps his ingredients simple and delicious. Thomas and his sons said they want Swiss Bakers to smell like a bakery, and not a restaurant. By this they meant that bakery items are their priority, not a cluttered menu with too many items. The Swiss Bakers are clearly trying to offer a total sensory experience and environment for their guests. If I can’t make it to Switzerland just yet, I’ll just have to take a trip to the Swiss Bakers instead: Grand Opening February 28th.

This looked more like a fairy tale than a real city.

This looked more like a fairy tale than a real city.

Blueberry Berliner

Blueberry Berliner

Local Excusions

February 27, 2013

Well it’s been a while since I’ve posted here, in my defense it’s also been awhile since I’ve left the country…and those two seem to go hand in hand. Part time grad school and part time work seem to be much more time consuming than a full time job. But not to worry, I have some trip ideas up my sleeves, but in the meantime I’ll have to entertain you with culinary trips and sensory excursions. Stay tuned…

Who turned out the lights?

October 7, 2011

So we took an overnight flight to Santiago Chile and arrived around 8am. It’s rather disconcerting to have an 11 hour flight and not have any time difference when you get there. Also I never sleep on the flight over so even though I was hyped on adrenaline and excited to be in Chile by the time we were eating dinner we were pretty tired. The Bed and Breakfast we were staying at had a restaurant across the street so we figured we would just go there for dinner. Shortly after ordering the power went out. No one at the restaurant really reacted, they just kept on serving food and brought a candle to our table. By the end of dinner I was looking at my friend thinking she looked as sleepy as I felt. We paid the bill and could even use our credit cards. Of course this ended up being the only night we rocked our heels and I managed to stumble down the pitch dark stairs but luckily only scraped up my arm. Then we stumbled across the dirt parking lot to the Bed and Breakfast. But at this point we saw that more areas were out than just our restaurant (it later turned out to be nationwide). When we’d arrived at our hotel in the morning the owner’s mother had been leaving and said the owner wouldn’t be back until the next day. She had given us a key code for the door but no key. Yes, an electronic key pass. Which of course wasn’t going to work when the power was out. The houses are all blocked off by fences with spikes on top and often with electric fence on top. The mother had given us the number to her other daughter…which we’d left in the hotel thinking we were just going across the street. So we stumbled back to the restaurant and tried in broken Spanish to explain the situation. They took us back across the street-in the dark, in our heels, but this time with a flashlight. They finally understood the problem was the power outage and tried calling the other daughter on the cell phone. They also tested the electric fence above the spiked fence and found THAT was still working (don’t ask me how). I couldn’t convince my friend that she could fit through the gap between the fences so we stumbled back to the restaurant where we had a nice Carmenere red Chilean wine on the house while they tried to figure out what to do with us. Luckily the glass of wine was about the right length of time for the power to come back on. Cause for the outage? Still unknown…

“But why Chile?”

October 5, 2011

A friend of mine from college and I just got back from a 9 day trip to Chile. You, like the entire country of Chile might be asking why we went. For us it didn’t seem like a crazy idea. My friend wanted to take a trip, had never been to South America, and felt Argentina was too popular right now so why not go off the path to Chile? And me, well we know I never turn down a trip. Turns out a good cure for the end of summer blues is sneaking off to South America and catching some of their spring. But I think I know why the Chileans were asking that question. We ran into very few tourists from the United States (I’m reluctant to call us ‘Americans’ when we were in the other ‘Americas’) and those we did were mostly students taking courses. The tourists we did run into were mostly from Europe, Canada or Brazil. And the Europeans and Canadians were on month-long tours of the entire South American continent. So the question “Why are you only going to Chile” is because most tourists do the whole continent. Any “Why so short” is because Europeans take their vacations seriously and get at least a month of paid vacation. We met one British couple at the “2nd half” of their 6 month world tour. The girl was on sabbatical from her accounting job! How can you leave a job for 6 months and come back and still have it? I mean seriously, us United Stat-ians need to get our vacation act together because who doesn’t want to do month-long trips overseas?

Chile

October 5, 2011

Just got back from a little trip to South America! Posts coming soon!