a few weeks ago, i meet a friend for brunch at essential baking. we weren't really supposed to be taking pictures in there, so i just snapped these three. as you can see, a bit, one wall is stacked high of shelves holding beautiful bread. bread in all different shapes, with flour seeped into the different. this bread wall is by far my favorite thing about essential. it feels like a classic boulangerie in paris. or, like the bakery my dad used to work in on bainbridge island, where i remember coming in and seeing bread on display all the way to the ceiling, in shapes of alligators and mouses.
the pastry case at essential contains everything from cookies and croissants to chocolate eclairs and fruit tarts. there is a huge chalkboard menu full of homemade sandwiches and soups. and, of course, there is an espresso machine. the wallingford location of essential is a great place to bike to, because it is near the burke-gilman trail. usually i stop there to get a sandwich or pick up a loaf of bread, but on this day i sat with my friend and had a nice latte and apple croissant.