Where are all the good bakeries? Sure, there's the French Pantry but that's not open on the weekend so what's a person got to do to get a good loaf of bread on a Saturday morning? Well, one option is to head down to St Augustine's recently opened Opus 39 Bakery. Some of you more distinguished and wealthy readers out there may be familiar with the Opus 39 restaurant, one of St. Augustine's most notoriously posh dining establishments. Well, now some of us not-so-rich folk can head out back for a bite to eat at their fantastic little bakery.
I'm assuming that the bakery out back initially started to exclusively supply the restaurant with fresh bread. Be that the case or not, it still serves such a purpose as you can see the staff carrying basket loads of the fresh baked loaves across the courtyard. And what a courtyard it is. There are a very small number of places to sit inside which may prove difficult on a rainy day but on beautifully clear mornings like the one we encountered, the perfect place to be is out in the courtyard.
Beyond the loaves of bread and confections you would expect from a bakery, there is also a small variety of ready-made sandwiches to choose from. Considering the quality and size, the price is fairly reasonable with a half sandwich costing $3. Great coffee as well.
All in all, the Opus 39 Bakery is an amazing place to spend a peaceful morning. And there's always the option of grabbing a loaf or two of bread for the days you can't make it.
Update: Tragically, The Bakery is now closed and Opus 39 itself will be shutting its doors later this week. The strain of the economic downturn has proven too much for the owners and their investor, who recently backed out. The baker has vowed to stay on and bread will still be available for wholesale while they try to find someone else who might be interested in taking control of the Bakery and re-opening the cafe. So perhaps there is still a chance for this amazing, albeit short-lived, addition to downtown St. Augustine.
The loss of Opus 39 is a real blow to the city of St. Augustine. Here's hoping that the Bakery will find new ownership and that the sad news might stir up some new investors to save the restaurant before it's too late. You can read more about this misfortune at First Coast News, The Jacksonville Business Journal, Historic City News, and The St. Augustine Record.
The Bakery by Opus 39
39 Cordova St
St Augustine, FL 32084