Sandwich-sized loaves, cookies, muffins and scones, hot and cold sandwiches and soon, soups and salads are on the menu.
South Pasadena is a pretty placid place, so locals were excited to see a new addition to Mission Ave. with the opening of Great Harvest Bread, first announced last April. It's not a frou frou French bakery with baguettes and croissants; rather Great Harvest is a franchise concept (though it's locally-owned) offering freshly baked wheat and white sandwich loaves, baked goods, sandwiches and Peet's coffee. The selection of breads rotates each day with choices like cheddar garlic and raisin cinamon chip. I tried a slice of hearty, slightly sweet Dakota bread, with pumpkin and other seeds. The addition of cream cheese to a berry scone made it much moister than most scones, though I suspect a berry/apple oat bar packed an awful lot of sugar into one square. Since it's a franchise, the mix of items seems tailored pretty much to mid-America -- it would be nice to see more local food items for sale or a nod to Southern Californians' somewhat more sophisticated, healthier tastes.Opening day drew South Pasadena city council members and lots of curious locals.
Though today was the first day, Great Harvest's earthy decor and location in a historic building (next to Mission Yoga) makes it look like it's been there forever, handing out cookies to kids in strollers and providing a new spot for coffee and pastries in the morning, and sandwiches at lunch. Several tables and a few comfy chairs provide in-store seating; no word yet on whether they'll have wi-fi. Wonder if my yoga classes will now be scented with baking bread?