Vine Bakery serves up homey goodness with a side of love. Plus: Their recipe for a homemade sourdough loaf.  

Photo by Anne Marie Tamburro.

Since it opened on Main Street in 2014, Vine Sourdough Bakery has exuded a homey atmosphere, and it’s easy to understand why: Home-cooked meals brought together Dean Griebel and Theresa Zokovitch, the husband and wife team behind the bakery, during the early stages of their relationship.

“Dean courting me was the process of food,” Zokovitch said. “He made such good food that I said, ‘Enough already! You need to do this for other people!’”

It was no half-baked idea. After Dean created his own sourdough starter—a mixture of flour and water that is used to cultivate wild yeast and gives homemade bread its rich, authentic flavor—the couple began selling their baked goods at local farmers markets, where they found success and customers who wanted more. In 2011, they moved into a warehouse before opening at their current location in May 2014.

With the new location came an expanded menu. Vine now offers a variety of homemade, fresh bread and pastries, soups and organic teas, all made from locally sourced ingredients.

“He made such good food that I said, ‘Enough already! You need to do this for other people!’”

These local ingredients provided a starting point for Vine, which the partners hoped could provide Gainesville with a healthy, organic alternative to commercially baked goods.

“We wanted to provide something that was completely missing from this town,” Zokovitch said, “With a standard of as few ingredients as possible to create a delicious and wholesome product.”

Much of the inspiration for Vine also came from Gainesville itself. Zokovitch said she’s committed to having local artists display their work on the walls and local musicians play.

“We just built around what was available to us,” Zokovitch said. “So much about this is a community effort. It’s not just Dean and I.”

While the final product might seem effortless, for Zokovitch and Griebel, the bakery is a labor of love.

“Easy? Oh, that’s not what drives us,” said Theresa, pointing to a stack of baguettes behind her, each of which can take up to 16 hours to make.

“The goal here isn’t about profit,” she continued. “It’s about finding a good product and providing something wholesome for the community. What drives us is having integrity and good food.” •


Vine’s

Country Loaf

 

DIRECTIONS

1. In a bowl, measure the water, then drop in the starter. It should be floating (if not, wait until it does). Add all the flour and mix until everything comes together in an even consistency with no dry or wet spots.

2. Cover for 30 minutes allowing for autolyse, a method that delivers a dough that’s easier to work with and shape, and a loaf with better texture, rise and flavour.

3. Add salt and knead for 5 minutes.

4. Cover. Over the next 2 hours, gently fold the dough onto itself in one rotation, then flip the dough upside down. In this position let it rest another 30 minutes.

5. Preheat oven and Dutch oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.

6. After the last flip, let rest for one hour.

7. Turn onto a clean surface, shape the loaf and put it into a floured basket. Allow to proof another 30 to 60 minutes.

8. Carefully remove the Dutch oven from the oven, drop in the loaf, score, cover and put into the oven for 20 minutes.

9. Remove the lid carefully, tipping the lid away from you to avoid any steam. Then lower the temperature to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and finish cooking another 20 minutes.

10. The loaf should have dark gold to light brown tones and should show caramelization.

11. Let cool on a wired rack. 

INGREDIENTS

makes a 1 ~ 2 lb loaf

  • 450 g all purpose flour
  • 50 g medium grained/stone ground whole wheat flour
  • 350 g water
  • 10 g Himalayan salt
  • 100 g ripened starter