The 10 Best Loaves Of Bread In S.F.

While slyly unbuttoning our trousers to make room, we prepare to tell a tale of carbs totally worth consuming. In a city where food rules all, we want to take you back to the basics. That’s why we hunted down the best loaves of bread baked in the ovens of S.F.’s top doughy kitchens.
From gracefully propped baguettes to hefty, yeasty mounds, we have taken it upon ourselves to incur the best the city has to offer — and no neighborhood is safe from our inquiring lens or grumbling bellies! Click through all the crumbly creations after the jump, and get ready to starch your journey to delectable slices of goodness.

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Tartine Bakery's Plain Country Bread, $8.25, at Tartine
Is it even possible to create a bread roundup without including this title-holder? Tartine may be taking over the world one baked good at a time, but we still love its modest approach. We suggest you set your sights on the plain country loaf and its harmonious play between thin rind and fluffy center. It's best served right out of the oven, to be eaten while people-watching just outside the shop. Each slice is perfect with simple butter and seasonal jelly!
Tartine Bakery, 600 Guerrero Street (at 18th Street); 415-487-2600.
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Bread Srsly's Classic Sourdough, $8.50, at Bi-Rite Market
Gluten averters, this one is for you! Sadie of Bread Srsly sure knows how to prepare a simple baked good that measures up to those San Francisco sourdoughs. This meal needs little dressing up aside from a quick pop in the toaster and a swipe of butter. With no excuses left for avoiding the grain provisions aisle at Bi-Rite, dig into dough that is dairy-, nut-, and wheat-free! With a dewy taste, this one is bound to stay fresh longer!
Bi-Rite Market, 550 Divisadero Street (between Fell and Hayes streets); 415-551-7900.
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The Acme Bread Company's Olive Bread, $4.99, at The Acme Bread Company
In the event that you feel like wowing your guests at your next dinner party, this unforgettable loaf will do the trick. With chunks of rich green olives and that salted aroma, it could very well be pasta's new best friend. As a San Francisco sweetheart, we had no doubts that Acme would pull through when it came down to starchy satisfaction, but one bite into this flavorsome fare and you will be hooked!
The Acme Bread Company, 1 Ferry Building (at The Embarcadero); 415-288-2978.
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Arizmendi's Seeded Baguette, $2.75, at Arizmendi
Just one of these slender, seeded baguettes baked by Arizmendi will transform you to an instant appetizer-serving queen. It is practically made for decadent toppings like bruschetta, goat cheese, and figs. It's the easiest way to get your bread fix, and not to mention it will make you look like an hors d'oeuvre pro at every potluck. In the event you are feeling lazy, whip it up with a decadent cheese plate and voilà! Yes, it's that easy.
Arizmendi, 1331 9th Avenue (between Irving and Judah streets); 415-566-3117.
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Thorough Bread and Pastry's Chocolate Loaf, $2.50, at Thorough Bread and Pastry
Small but dangerously delicious, this rich, chocolate sweet roll is the only dessert you will ever need. Accompanied by a cappuccino during that 4 p.m. sweet tooth-driven hour, it is worth all those calories you won't even care to count. Thorough Bread and Pastry is best known for being the place where all those chefs-in-training at San Francisco Baking Institute go to showcase their skills, so you know you're in for some top-notch goods. Head to the cafe's serene back patio to indulge in this little lump for the ultimate pick-me-up!
Thorough Bread and Pastry, 248 Church Street (between Market and 15th streets); 415-558-0690.
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Flour & Co.'s Cinnamon Swirl, $7, at Flour & Co.
At its cute newish space in Nob Hill, we welcome Flour & Co. and its insanely tasty cinnamon swirl to the list. Not only is it eye-catching, but the aroma of baked spice will have you eager to take a bite before you can drop it in the pan for Saturday-morning French toast! We can sum it up in three words: fluffy, light, and sweet. Eating one of these loaves in one sitting is a judgement-free zone, because we couldn't resist doing the same. The bakery produces very small batches, so get 'em while they're hot!
Flour & Co., 1030 Hyde Street (between Pine and California streets); 415-992-7620.
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Sour Flour's Sourdough, $4, at La Victoria Bakery
This niche bread is where it's at when it comes to crusted creations. With a facile list of ingredients, this loaf is made of completely organic flour, is naturally fermented, and hand-kneaded. The result? The taste of total freshness with each bite. Boasting a slight sweet twang, and the perfect density for a solid sandwich, Sour Flour takes the top prize in the lunch department. Made completely in the small kitchen of La Victoria, expect to see this bread start to pop up everywhere!
La Victoria Bakery, 2937 24th Street (at Alabama Street); 415-824-8552.
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Della Fattoria's Pane Integrale, $6.99, available at Bi-Rite Market
We know this one is technically whipped up outside of our 7x7 square miles, but this Petaluma-based patisserie is worth noting — plus, you can scoop it up at Bi-Rite! With an exterior appearance that sends us into reveries of Southern European markets, Della Fattoria's Pane Integrale is a beautiful round that any dinner table should not be without. Made with a few delicious ingredients, it will never overwhelm but only uplift those picnic sandies to a new level. With its dark appearance and country flavors, digging in is the only option!
Bi-Rite Market, 550 Divisadero Street (between Fell and Hayes streets); 415-551-7900.
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Josey Baker Bread's Bird Bread, $6, at The Mill
If you're looking for a loaf that is worth its weight in gold (we would pay for that crust alone), then stopping into The Mill is non-negotiable. Josey Baker (yes, that is his real last name) is the joyful dough dude behind those killer toasts smothered in cream cheese and is the master when it comes to whole wheats. With a steady rotation of recipes, his flavor of the moment is what he has dubbed Bird Bread. This hand-churned, seedy mass has flavors that will enhance any meal you pair it with — however, we suggest eating it solo for the full effect! Gobble it up while you can because this one may not be around forever. Bonus: You can look forward to upcoming fall flavors such as maple oatmeal whole wheat and fresh apple.
The Mill, 736 Divisadero Street (between Hayes and Fulton streets); 415-345-1953.
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Noe Valley Bakery's Double Raisin Bread, $5.40, at Noe Valley Bakery
For sweet fruit fans, this bakery serves up some double trouble that you won't be able to stay away from. With a nectarous little bod, a crunchy crust, and chewy middle, you will find a bevy of oversized raisins that make this bun pop! Its balance of berry tastes makes this one appropriate for all hours of the day. Top this little guy with your go-to cheese for the perfect morning delight!
Noe Valley Bakery, 4073 24th Street (at Castro Street); 415-550-1405.
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Outerlands' Sourdough, $6, available at Outerlands
While we've had our fair share of sourdoughs (it's one of S.F.'s crowning achievements, after all) this particular choice is nothing like we have bitten into yet. If you have enjoyed a brunch or two at Outerlands, you understand how crazy-good its thickly cut toasts are. When its sourdough is topped with heirloom tomatoes or a fried egg, then your day is immediately made. Want to know what sets it apart? David Muller, Outerlands' owner and bread maker extraordinaire, chalks it up to the resto's close proximity to the ocean and the method in which the bread rises overnight — on wood counter tops, no less. Its lightly gold shade and crisp aroma will have you on the fast track to an all-bread diet.
Outerlands, 4001 Judah Street (at 45th Avenue); 415-661-6140.
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La Victoria Bakery'a Bollio De Piso, 3 for $1, at La Victoria Bakery
They say good things come in small packages, and we think that's especially true when referencing this Mexican dinner roll that manages to be both sweet and savory. The bun will never go stiff over night, and is cooked atop a stone (never a pan) to give it that authentic flavor and texture. Introduce this one to your bread basket to satisfy a crowded feast or a table for one.
La Victoria Bakery, 2937 24th Street (at Alabama Street); 415-824-8552.

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