York, England

I spent the last few months traveling from London to Beijing. Here is a taste of one place we spent time. Follow the links to read about others.

September 20th- 22nd, 2005

After a fantastic time on the Isle of Bute we traveled to Yorkshire, England. While there we visited a great bakery, thanks to a tip from our host Emily. This bakery is named Via Vecchia and is marked with nothing but a blank red sign and nestled among the other businesses on the Shambles.

A sweet older woman sold us a cheese and marmite loaf, a cheese bagel, and an olive and thyme loaf whilst congratulating us after each selection with, “Good choice.” This tiny store front boasts a constant stream of patrons as well as a large number of posters of topless women. Fear not, their prices are far more modest.

We next walked a few yards to the market and bought some cheeses, Derby sage and Highland mustard and herbs, also at a very good price.

The olive and thyme loaf was soft, white, and moist with whole garlic-steeped green olives, flecks of thyme, and a dusting of flour.

The cheese bagel was good, though definitely not even close to a bagel. This light and airy roll was extremely soft and compressed with even a slight grip.

The marmite and cheese loaf was the real treat. I would venture to say that even those who dislike marmite could enjoy this bread. It was dense and hearty with a fantastic and substantial crust and a soft and creamy interior. The crumb was moist and had loads of cheese and gorgeous swirls of marmite.

The cheeses were also quite good. The Derby sage had a strong taste of sage and a creamy texture. The Highland mustard and herb had whole mustard seed which provided a strong and pleasant flavor. This cheese was much softer than I expected and could easily be spread if brought to room temperature.

Also along the Shambles we found Mr. Sandwich, a shop run by a very jolly older man that sells dozens upon dozens of sandwiches for only one pound. Amazing! These were good sandwiches, well worth their cost. We ordered a fig, goat cheese, and cucumber and a mozzarella, tomato, and basil. If you cannot find something to tickle your fancy on the 30+ list, he will gladly make you the sandwich you crave.

Next stop, Devon.

show hide 4 comments

tara - It alarms me to admit, but the cheese and marmite bread sounds rather appealing! Marmite is a staple in my parents’ household, and every one in a while I will “try” it again, but still have not acquired the taste. However, the look and texture of that bread may make me a convert!

Marcie Tambone - Gemma!!
Talked to your Mom the other day and she told me what you are up to, I think it is wonderful. I’m so glad you are getting this experience. I did a little hitch-hiking in Europa during the summer of 1968, I was twenty. Best thing for a young person, to see where we came from and how others are living. And, oh my!, the bakeries are heaven.
Your friend looks nice! Even with a mouthful from Mr. Sandwich. BTW, the photos are breath taking.

Melissa - Wow! everything looks so beautiful and the yummy food is everywhere!!!! have a fabolous time—and please keep us posted :) Hugs from rainy Panama!

gemma - Tara, it was so good! I too was a tepid Marmite fan before this bread.
Hi Marcie,
So nice to hear from you! I hope you are well. We are having a fantastic time, and yes, John is great!
Thanks Melissa! We are having definitely having fun!

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