The Bakehouse at Chelsea

The Bakehouse At Chelsea

Anne Leonard

Trudging through the overcast Saturday morning, I was awakened by the bright storefront that The Bakehouse at Chelsea offers to the Ghent neighborhood. As we entered, the husband and I were entranced by all of the movement; a spread of foccacia varieties were being wood-fired while an aproned woman churned piles of pastry dough sheets. By 10 a.m. we’d missed their signature mornings buns, and the lovely lady assisting us said everything we saw in the case would be gone by noon. When presented with rows of beautiful, organic, naturally leavened loaves of bread and pastries, it becomes hard for me to tend to a balanced diet. Since we had company in town for Labor Day weekend, this bread indulgence became justified.

Bakehouse at Chelsea in Ghent

Visiting the Bakehouse was like going to the candy store; my senses were saturated with sweet and savory smells as I dreamt of purchasing each one. There were lemon scones, palmier cookies and brioche rolls, which was likened to a cinnamon roll sweetened with a glistening simple syrup. The flaky, golden-brown spinach and feta turnovers were another admirable choice. The loaves laid in baskets, each tempting me with their flour-dusted tops. Loaves swirled with raisins and cinnamon. Their Bakehouse Loaf went the more whole wheat route, but I fell in love with the Rustic Campagna—a 95% white floured loaf with a firm crust and a chewy center. I ripped off a jagged piece in mid-conversation, flour bits and crumbs flew about; my lady-like manners were pushed aside for the most toothsome bite of bread I’ve had in a while.

 rustic campagna

We set down the rustic campagna to devour the croissants we decided on—I went for the chocolate and he the gruyere and ham. 

chocolate croissant. ham croissant

The chocolate croissant flaked into a perfect mound with a spread of semisweet chocolate swirling throughout each buttery layer. I managed to save a bite for the next morning. His savory croissant centered around thick-cut country ham fused by warm gruyere in a doughy croissant.

Whether it’s the savory or sweet route, Bakehouse excels in each. Bread making is not a skill I’ve delved into as of yet, but until then I’ll let Bakehouse do the crafting.

 bakehouse in norfolk

bakehouse in Ghent

The Bakehouse at Chelsea is open Tuesday–Saturday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Visit their website or Facebook page for more information.

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