At Granville Island, you don’t usually see one of the vendors rebuilding their stalls (or booths, or whatever it is they call their space). It’s especially unusual to see one of the more equipment-intensive establishments doing big changes, like the 2 fish vendors, the dairy stall, the 2 Italian food vendors, or one of the 2 confectioners. So it was pretty shocking to see Stuart’s Bakery completely disassembled and what looked like years of crumbs that had fallen between the pastry cases and other bits of the floor behind yellow tape and traffic cones.
I asked one of the workmen if the bakery had gone out of business or if this was just a renovation and he anxiously assured me that Stuart’s was doing just fine, and don’t worry, they’ll be back after the work is done.
Of the three bakeries at Granville Island, I like each for something different: Terra Breads is the nearly legendary artisanal bread shop that boasts large sourdough bagettes and incredible blueberry bread. Just outside the market forming a backdrop to the whimsically named ‘Triangle Square’, “La Baguette et L’Echalote” is where I like to get croissants and the occasional half-baked loaf to finish at the oven at home. Stuart’s was where I preferred to get staple breads; a good, dense white bread loaf or raisin bread, some superb fresh homemade pitas, and every once in a while, a piece of pastry or pie. It was the most old fashioned of the three and despite the fact that it was a little dowdy, it nevertheless frequently had a line (although rarely as long as the ones at Terra Breads). Again, despite the fact that I’m speaking of it in the past tense, Stuart’s is not gone; It’s just being redone. I will be very surprised if the new incarnation changes anything but the displays and signage. I’m sure that there are a few things that never change, and probably shouldn’t.