Wholesome. That’s the word that rose to mind when I walked into south Austin’s newest bakery, ThoroughBread. ThoroughBread’s doughy delights were once available only by special delivery, or at coffee shop pop-ups hosted by Spokesman and Once Over.
Now baker and owner Ryan Goebel has opened the dearest little bread and cookie shop for Austinites to enjoy.
Wistful Wheaty Whiffs
I immediately craved Goebel’s bread when I walked into a recent media preview and THAT SMELL wafted over me. That wholesome smell makes me nostalgic. Maybe it’s all those field trips we took to the Wonder Bread factory as a kid–only much, much better.
The bread tastes as good as it smells. Goebel focuses heavily on sourdough or, in his words, the “holiest of bread.” He bakes several variations of sourdough, including white, wheat, rye, and olive. The Austin baker also offers traditional white and wheat seeded loaves.
Goebel, a lifelong south Austin local, did the whole Austin musician thing, playing in bands for years. In 2015, he found himself wondering about the new life he could form as he returned to Austin after years on the road. He bought a bag of flour and confesses that he more or less failed at making delicious bread that first time.
No matter. He knew he was hooked.
Sourdough Softly Rising
Goebel is affable and immediately struck me as someone I’d be happy to, well, break bread with. He found more to baking bread than merely its comforting, feel-good qualities. As he explained, “There was something so scientific about the measurements and temperature regulations, and simultaneously creating something; like precision art.”
He threw himself into reading about bread making, practicing and waiting months for the lightbulb-over-the-head moment. It all clicked once Goebel’s brother, Matt, gave him the “Tartine Bread” cookbook by Chad Robertson. The lightbulb illuminated for Goebel.
Goebel spent months perfecting each recipe by baking several variations of each one (and becoming everyone’s favorite friend by sharing his test loaves).
Once he achieved doughy nirvana, circa 2016, good things began happening. One of his happy human guinea pigs offered to buy a loaf a week, and Goebel knew he was onto something. ThoroughBread launched with a few choice customers who kept spreading the word. Soon, Goebel expanded to delivery service within his 78704 zip code.
With a brick and mortar shop as his end goal, Goebel kept experimenting–now with cookies. He told me he likes to bake his cookies so they are crunchy on the outside and still a bit gooey inside. The chocolate chip pecan, which I consider the standard for any cookie peddler, is solid.
What stands out for me are his stuffed cookies, though. Among Goebel’s sweet concoctions are a banana cookie stuffed with Nutella, and his version of a peanut butter and jelly cookie. I find basic jelly a bit gross, so I was delighted to hear he uses raspberry preserves in his cookies. The tartness and low ooze factor of the raspberry preserves complement the peanut butter well. It’s like PBJ for grown ups.
Pop in to ThoroughBread
The shop itself is humble and lends itself to a neighborly chat. The bread and cookies are phenomenal, but you know they will be as soon as that wholesome smell hits you right in the feels.
ThoroughBread opens its doors to the public today, Nov. 6, 2018. Stop by soon and feed your inner child.
1709 Bluebonnet Lane – Facebook
@theAustinot wants to know:
Where do you get fresh-baked bread in Austin?