Grand Central Bakery will open the doors to its seventh Portland café Monday, July 23rd in Beaumont Village. The new bakery, at 4440 N.E. Fremont Street, settles into the ground floor of the stained wood building called Ode to Roses, the long ago home of Fife restaurant.
The owners turned exclusively to local contractors and craftsman for the completely remodeled interior. It will seat 50 and feature a native Oregon madrone wood floor, a wrought-iron bread rack crafted by Portland metal sculptor Jim Meakin, FSC-certified butcher block counters and photographs of Oregon farm scenes from nationally renowned Portland photographer Charles Gullung. Outside you’ll find a patio that seats 40, three bike racks, a small parking lot, beautifully lighted signs and – because this is Portland – a place to post poetry.
Though distinctive in some ways, this Grand Central Bakery will feel familiar to other locations, with warm colors and elemental materials – wood, steel and stone. It has clear sight lines to the baking production areas, so early morning customers will see bakers pulling jammers and scones from the oven. “We want you to know it’s a bakery,” says co-owner Ben Davis, who opened Grand Central’s first Portland branch in 1993. “And we hope that the neighborhood will think of it as their bakery.”
As for the menu, expect all the Grand Central favorites: freshly baked breads and handmade pastries, plus a wide assortment of sandwiches and soups made from peak-season produce and locally sourced meats. Specials for summer include a popular sandwich called The Green Goat, featuring hazelnut arugula pesto, sliced roasted beets and Portland Creamery chevre on a toasted seeded baguette; frangipane tarts topped with fresh berries; raspberry and blueberry U-Bake frozen pies; and Sesame Currant Bread, a hand-formed semolina loaf flavored with tahini.
The Beaumont café will employ 12 and be managed by Jenna Rice, currently café manager at Grand Central Bakery in Multnomah Village.
Grand Central operates seven cafes in Portland and three in Seattle and has a thriving wholesale bread business in both cities. The family-owned bakery was founded in Seattle in 1989 by Gwenyth Bassetti. It expanded to Portland in 1993, opening on Hawthorne Boulevard. Its ownership group includes two of Bassetti’s children and other longtime employees and close friends.
About Grand Central Baking Company
Grand Central is a family-owned artisan bakery specializing in European-style rustic breads baked in a hearth oven. The bakery’s retail cafes serve hand-made pastries, scratch-made soups and salads and delicious, made-to-order sandwiches based on the best local ingredients available in season. In addition to its seven Portland and three Seattle retail locations, Grand Central’s breads can be enjoyed at many of Northwest’s finest restaurants and purchased at the region’s favorite supermarkets, including Whole Foods, Fred Meyer, New Seasons, PCC, Metropolitan Markets and Town and Country Markets. The bakery was recently named one of 20 Great American Bread Bakeries and its Como loaf one of the top 20 artisan breads in America by Saveur.