Best Of

Best Free Bread

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The complimentary bread basket has been the subject of much debate in recent years, with many restaurants choosing to charge for their fussy loaves, butters, and other spreads. Paying bakery prices for high-quality carbs doesn’t bother us in the least, but at Bâtard, Drew Nieporent and Markus Glocker’s spiritual pivot from Corton, bread-baking has the added benefit of being a communal effort. “Our pastry department makes the dough, and then in the afternoon, the whole kitchen comes together to shape and proof the bread for baking,” Glocker says. The chewy fruits of their labor include Austrian bread braided with caraway and poppy seeds and demi-sourdough baguettes conveniently referred to as “bâtards.” Served warm with softened butter, the pliant, yeasty loaves are only available as part of dinner service — drinking an “Ol’ Dirty Bâtard” cocktail at the bar in hopes of gluten nirvana won’t cut it.

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