Monday, January 18, 2010

6 1/2 plumbers, 2 contractors, 4 worker bees, the county and 2 visionaries...

Here we go building the new home of The Bread Board in downtown Falls City....404 Main St. to be exact. Our space is an old tavern (apparently the seedy tavern after hours). Just our kind of place. Give John and Keith an old abandoned building that needs a ton of work, a great vision and we're happy!

It's been a week of meeting with cranky, expensive plumbers, nice electricians and cooperative county inspectors.

This morning the concrete truck and pump truck arrived to pour the foundation. A sleepless night last night wondering how it was all going to go down. I know nothing about pouring a foundation, but my biggest concern was, "did we order enough concrete to finish the pour?" I never doubted Senor Juan and his accurate calculations, but I think you should always have plan B. I still don't know what that plan would look like. Thanks to precise measurements and the online concrete calculator, we succeeded with enough to pour in a small wood storage foundation and an extra 1/4 yd. to boot! I got tears in my eyes watching it all unfold, but didn't want to cry in front of two concrete trucks and all the boys working diligently on Main St. Normally I dive in to help, but we have 2 very experienced masons on hand and once the concrete started to pour, they jumped right in and started shoveling, raking and screeding to a beautiful finish and me getting emotional. Besides, there is only so much room to stand in 13'x14'x18" of concrete right? They did a beautiful job and we all finished by putting our hands and names in the wet cement. It really is moving to watch it all happen. We say to each other, several times a day, "We're building a bakery!" Simply because neither one of us can believe it is happening...and happening fast!

We are in our 4th week of renovations. Demolition is almost complete. The old shake siding was taken off the building to put up new siding, but what we found underneath the shake was a nice surprise! 100 year old ship lap that is in decent condition, so we decided to continue that theme. We are putting it all back together now while making room for new doors, windows, electrical and plumbing. Keith needs to stay away from the bargain centers and adding to the contractor bill. The inside walls are framed and we now have a better idea of what the interior space is going to look like. Even better than we thought! We are so excited!!

While you are in the bakery, you can watch all the breads and pastries being made and pulled out of the oven. There will be a 4' wall that separates the production area from the bread counter. The space is about 30' x40' inside with concrete floors and 12' ceilings. We are using the old bar for the bread counter/espresso bar with a few added updates. Yes, we pulled out the beer taps (in hopes to re-install them when our friends Susan and Cheryl start their brewing business).

I won't put a curse on ourselves and give out an exact opening date, so we are just saying we will be baking in our new oven by summertime.

We are taking pictures along the way and they will be posted as soon as we have the time to learn how to download them.

Thank you all kind friends for your continued support as this would not be happening without you and your passion for bread and believing in our community.

Keith and John
The Bread Board...where food, culture and community intersect.


  1. 6 1/2 plumbers?????? I am glad you are footing bill and not me! I know what that can cost. My back is hurting just thinking about finishing all that concrete. I am so happy I don't do that anymore. Glad everything is going well!! It sounds as if things are starting to shape up and your vision is starting to come together. Sure wish there was a way to get ahold of your product and sell it at the Kirkwood Farmers Market. Great Harvest Bread Co. has good bread, but it does not compare to "Johnny" bread as Hailey has come to call it.
    Sure would like to see some before, during and after pictures!!! Take care.
    Hailey says "Hi", and keep a fire in the ovens.
    Love ya!!

  2. I love new beginnings and this is going to be one of my favorites, I know. Congratulations.

  3. Jason: in truth, not even 1 plumber yet... we've just dealt with now 7 plumbers who have been giving us bids. This last guy was fairly nice and our contractor thinks he knows a guy who would be a little more affordable. We'll see. Glad you guys found us. Maybe you need to come learn how to bake and build your own brick oven and sell your own bread in Kirkwood... Hailey - I'll be thinking of you when we build our first fire in the new oven Maybe we'll call it Hailey's eternal flame...love you guys. Johnny and Keith

  4. Susan: we're just a few weeks away from a job opening...know anyone looking for a SOURCEress job? We'll need help sourcing our ingredients you know...