By the 3rd morning of our recent trip north to wine country California, we were seasoned enough to know that we needed something hearty in the car cooler to soak up all the magnificent vino that lay ahead. Not only that, but before we started, I needed to find some grounding tea to meter my internal system back into its usual place and was seeking something bark-like and dark, fortified with earth and the spirits of old ancient trees.
Before a slated stop at Iron Horse Vineyards, we drove out along the Bohemian Highway near Sebastopol in search of the Wild Flour Bread. I had visited this particular bakery five years back when staying in the area with friends and the memory of the dark chocolate scone studded with raw ginger chunks had permanently imprinted itself on my brain.
We pulled up to the quaint little building amidst an overflowing lush green landscape and were instantly tantalized by the smells of hot bread baking within in their famous brick oven. Inside we found a tiny counter in front of a work area overflowing with tables full of many kinds of bread and baked goods. I immediately saw a row of their famous whipping cream scones with a chocolate variety drizzled in fudge and dotted with large dried cranberry and blood orange chunks made just for me.
The Cute Gardener tried a few samples, of which they generously hand out as many as you wish, before settling on a green garlic and goat cheese pretzel-esque concoction that would end up being torn into bite size chunks throughout the day between remaining wine trips.
Other things we didn’t try but which they are known for are the messy and sweet sticky buns, their round boule loaves with flavors like rosemary and garlic, and other magnificent hard crust breads of sourdough. The bread is made fresh daily and once it’s gone, it’s gone. Visitors are advised not to come too early to avoid the massive lines that form when the place first opens.
I was also able to find some excellent Kukicha Twig Tea amongst their large selection of organic bags near the coffee counter that you self-serve with water. The authentic time honored tea from Uji, Japan put me in exactly the right mode for enjoying the landscape and reflecting on the day ahead in little private places we stopped at in our car to eat our wares along the way to our first vineyard.