We arrive at Bakery Andante at 9:30. The shelves are being stacked. There’s a wonderful aroma in the air – freshly baked bread and, as it’s nearing Easter, spicy overtones. We meet Martin who has arrived with his daughter to buy a baguette for lunch. “This is my local.” he grins. “The bread is fantastic”. The baguettes at Bakery Andante are very special, they take 3 days to make. It takes time for them to reach the optimum flavour. They are delicious, authentic and fly off the shelves.
Welcome to Bakery Andante located in Morningside, Edinburgh. An appropriate name for what they do. Andante means “a moderately slow tempo” here the emphasis is on slow proving to develop flavour. The first thing you notice is the window display brimming with breads, sweet and savoury. Just beyond the counter you can glimpse into the bakery where Jon Wood and his assistant Kester and busily preparing the next dough required.
Jon Wood set up Bakery Andante 4 1/2 years ago after a career in Marketing. Giving up his spreadsheets, he cut his teeth on making huge numbers of loaves of bread for events – from his domestic kitchen! Now the award winning Bakery is going from strength to strength. The bakery was recently commended in the 2014 Farm Shop & Deli Awards Bakery of the Year Category and featured on Britain’s Best Bakery.
Jon’s mission is to producing bread without additives. Each sourdough loaf is made with just flour, salt and water. Yeasted breads also have as few ingredients as possible – just 6 in the wholemeal dough, in stark contrast to those sold in supermarkets. He firmly believes that many dietary problems have been caused by the Chorleywood process (where fermentation of dough is speeded up) rather than letting the glutens develop naturally.
He particularly enjoys making smaller batches of breads that keep his customers tempted. On the morning we visited, we counted an astonishing 24 different varieties including a lovely tangy lemon and sumac loaf and the exceptionally handsome covenanter’s loaf (which has an interesting story in its own right). You’ll find breads made from wholemeal, rye, spelt, beremeal and more. There are also plenty of tempting sweet doughs too: croissants, hot cross buns, pains au chocolat, luscious cakes and a range of biscuits and biscotti.
Mich Turner’s on Britain’s Best Bakery “The Covenanter’s Sourdough was the best sourdough that I’ve ever tasted”
His passion for bread and his bakery is palpable. It’s hard work but manageable. Rather than work overnight, he and his team start work at 5 am. The sourdoughs and poolish (another type of starter) were set off the previous evening, just before they finished for the day. The breads are shaped and proved a final time before baking ready for customers from 9 am. Baking then continues throughout the day. Jon’s optimistic about a growing love for food in the area despite the opening of a Local Sainsbury’s next door. “We just need a butchery and a grocery to make it complete”. And what next? I think we might just see Bakery Andante expanding.
Check out Edinburgh’s Bakeries on our Artisan Bread map
Bakery Andante are regulars at Edinburgh Farmer’s Market and the new Morningside market. The bakery is open from 7:30 am to 6 pm Monday to Friday and 8:30 am to 1 pm on Sundays.
352 Morningside Road
Email the bakery
Tel: 0131 447 8473
Photographs included in this post are all copyright Brendan MacNeill.