It didn't take long for word to get out about Bread & Butter Artisan Bakery and Local Market in Red Bank. With small-batch artisan breads in interesting varieties and lovely, delectable pastries fresh every morning, there's plenty to choose from for a quick meal in the morning or a stop on your way home before dinner.
Located on Dayton Boulevard between Ashland Terrace and Morrison Springs Road, the bakery's front windows offer a glimpse of the goodies inside, tempting drivers to make a quick turn into the business' small parking lot. It's not a large space, but it's plenty for a business that is primarily grab-and-go. An L-shaped counter is the focal point, with big jars of various cookies on one end and a glass display case of the day's baked goods on the other. Metal shelves behind the counter are filled with a selection of breads.
On each side are cases displaying a variety of regional products from small businesses such as Sequatchie Cove Creamery, Chattanooga Butter Co., Tickiwoo Farms, Harvest Roots, Olive Chattanooga, Hoff & Pepper and more. There's a selection of cured and preserved meats, too, so Bread & Butter would be a great place to put together a quality cheese and charcuterie board with ingredients from one stop.
A small standing counter along the window offers a space to doctor up a cup of Velo coffee or mingle before you head out to your car. For those who would rather sit, cafe tables out front are a great place for a quick bite or sip.
The first time I stopped at Bread & Butter was at the behest of a friend who lives in Red Bank. She was practically salivating as she told me about the Mustard & Gruyere Scone ($3.50) she and her husband had tried the day before. Apparently the two of them stopped in just to check the place out, bought one scone to share and went on their merry way. Two blocks and two bites later, they turned around and went back for more. That's a ringing endorsement if I've ever heard one.
› Where: Bread & Butter Artisan Bakery and Local Market, 3955 Dayton Blvd.
› Hours: 7 a.m. -7 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays and 9 a.m.-6 p.m.Sundays (Starting June 12, the bakery also will be open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday)
› Price range: $1.25 pecan sandies to $7 for assorted loaves of bread
› Alcohol: No
› For more information: 423-803-4446
So off I went for breakfast, a little dubious as to how good a savory scone could actually be. To sum up the experience, I didn't realize that finding a perfect scone was on my bucket list until I tasted just one bite of what has to be The Perfect Scone. Seriously. With a crunchy, flaky outside, and a light, fluffy inside, it's truly a dream. It's buttery with a bit of a tang from the mustard seeds and a nuttiness from the Gruyere.
Since my first visit, I have brought these scones to share with co-workers (and watched each one of them take a bite, close their eyes and sigh with bliss) and raved about them to my friends. One girlfriend drove from East Ridge all the way to Red Bank last week for one and reported back that it was worth every mile and minute spent.
If savory scones aren't your thing, the bakery always has a sweet counterpart to offer. The strawberry lemon scone is delicate and delicious, as well, and isn't quite as rich as the mustard. Plenty of other pastries rotate on the menu, from croissants ($3) and muffins ($2) to baked donuts (with blackberry and cream icing! $2) and cinnamon rolls ($4). These behemoths are soft and moist with a generous topping of cream cheese frosting.
I've been told by several people that the flourless chocolate brownies ($3.25) are to-die-for. Cookie varieties change daily, with traditional options along with adventurous combinations such as Chocolate Salted Rye and Garam Masala Snap. Cookies are $1.25 to $2.50, or get them for $1 on Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. during Cookie Happy Hour.
If you want something a little more substantial for breakfast, try one of the bakery's pockets ($5.50), a flaky wheat pastry folded over an assortment of fillings. I tried the Cowboy Pocket, which was stuffed with sausage, potato, black beans and a spicy cream. It was delicious. It reminded me of an empanada, and was big enough to feel like I'd had a meal.
The Breakfast Pocket has bacon, eggs, potato and maple syrup, and the vegetarian Latin Pocket is filled with beans, rice, plantains and cheese and comes with chimichurri sauce.
When bread is your mission over breakfast, Bread & Butter has you covered. Baguettes ($2.50) come out of the oven at 9:30 a.m., and other varieties ($5-$7) start coming out around 8 a.m. Not Quite White, Sonrisa Whole Wheat, Nine Grain and baguettes are available every day, with numerous other creations available each day of the week. See the bread schedule on butterthebread.com to find out when Feta & Basil, Cheesy Grits, Pecan Cranberry, Baltic Black, Bacon Baguette and many other flavors are on the menu.
Whether you live in Red Bank or have to drive out of your way to find it, Bread & Butter Bakery should be on your list of places to try. It's obvious great care is put both into the baking of the breads and pastries as well as into the creation of flavors. It's all beautiful and satisfyingly delicious. What more could you ask for in a bakery?
Contact Sara Jackson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6594.
This story was updated June 1 at 2 p.m. to reflect new operation and baking hours.