This is the very best way to start the day.
Fresh baked bread on a big plate with butter, olive oil, a spot of jam, and fresh fruit.
Ryan and I have shared this plate almost every morning at Companion Bakershop, since it opened mid-June.
It is the very best place in Santa Cruz for a simple breakfast, or to read in the mornings, surrounded by the comforting smell of baking bread.
Baker Erin runs the kitchen, with the support of Chris, our dough enthused friend. Erin's husband Jeremy plays bluegrass on the patio on the weekends, and serves Lulu's coffee inside the bakery during the week.
I think this will the hardest tradition to leave behind.
France will certainly have marvelous boulangeries, but the experience is more than the bread. In French, the word companion means friend. If you break "companion down into the roots, you get "co" and "pain". "Co" refers to something shared. "Pain" translates directly to bread in English. If you put them together, companion means, one with whom you share bread.
Every morning, I share my bread plate with my best friend, Ryan. I don't think I'm going to find such a fitting companion with whom to share my meals anywhere else in the world.