sourdough starter

A friend of ours from New York (Natalie Schulhofer) is looking for information on the old Sourdough Bakery on River Street. So far, shes been able to find out a few things, but Im sure somebody out there knows more. So, if you can, please let me know what youve heard. (The woman who, until recently, ran the place has apparently passed away and our friend is wondering what will become of the space. Theres even a chance that shed like to somehow be involved in keeping it going.) Heres what we do know This is from our friends last note:

i found more information about the place from a bread book. it was started as a non-profit bakery by a baker from the wildflour bakery in ann arbor with money from a good-bread advocacy/awareness association(!). tom did everything himself for a while. he used to make three kinds of bread but eventually expanded the variety. losing money, he was able to negotiate cheaper rent because it is in the historic district and the bakery meets an “appropriate use” stipulation which i guess allows the landlords leeway leasing the other spaces. so he continued. when it got to be too much for him to handle on his own, tom sold the place to three people who continued in the same vein. they have a grain mill there as well as the wood-fired oven. the new owners held bread demos at stores to educate people about wholegrain, naturally leavened breads. the story ends there, in 1999, when the book was published. i don’t know when the woman came into the picture. the co-op owns the space now (did i learn that from hillary?). i would really like to know what will happen to it. more than that, i would like to be a part of the effort to carry on what was begun.

do you think you could make some further inquiries at the co-op? i wonder who in particular manages it and what that person is looking to do. this is a very rare kind of place. i have heard about wildflour from others too and am sure you are right, that there are still bakers around from there who might be willing to teach.

(note: The legendary Wildflower Community Bakery in Ann Arbor closed its doors about five years ago, after something like a 30-year run.)

So, if you know any more about the history of the bakery, the plans for the future now that the woman who ran it (who was a very nice lady, by the way) has passed on, or anything about the operation of the oven, the breads baked, etc, please leave a comment or send me an email with your contact information. Thank you very much.

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