Wealthy Street Bakery
First day on a new job. Always a fun, nerve wracking experience. Like I mentioned a few days ago, I started a new part-time job in Grand Rapids. Today was my first day and I haven’t got much sleep since last week when I was offered the job. I’m always nervous about change no matter how excited I am to take on a new challenge.
That nervousness continued through the morning even after I got there. When lunch time rolled around, I still didn’t have much of an appetite, but knew I had to eat. I wanted something fairly light hoping it would help settle my stomach. I don’t know my way around Grand Rapids very well yet, but I knew I was fairly close to Wealthy Street and there are a number of businesses that line this neighborhood that I’ve been wanting to visit for quite a while.
The restaurant I chose was the first one I came along. The Wealthy Street Bakery is near the corner Wealthy Street and Union Avenue on the southeast side of Grand Rapids. There is a small parking lot that wraps around the building, but all those spots were full. Lucky for me, there was a spot on the street right in front of the building.
The building is an old neighborhood grocery store that was in ruins until four friends decided to restore it and open a bakery. Some features, like the tin ceilings and the door, are originals. Others, like the hardwood floors and plaster are recent additions meant to bring back the feeling of a classic building.
When I walked in just after noon, the bakery was buzzing in full lunch mode. Many of the dozen or so tables were full with people on laptops taking advantage of the free wifi while they were eating lunch. There were a few more people using the tables in front of the building to enjoy the nice day.
The menu board is above the counter in the middle of the space. For lunch, your options are soup, sandwich, or salad. For dinner, they throw pizza into the mix.
I ordered a simple Ham & Cheese sandwich which is the #2 on their sandwich board. I went with just a half sandwich and got it to go. The cost was only a little over four bucks. I instinctively grabbed my credit card. Places like the Wealthy Street Bakery are typically pretty expensive, so I was caught a little off guard when he said it was only four bucks.
By the time I got my iPod out of my pocket and connected to the WiFi, I heard my name called from the other side of the room. Another employee was holding a white paper bag with my sandwich. I let my e-mail finish loading, grabbed the bag, and headed out.
The sandwich was a pretty simple creation with a slice of Virginia smoked ham, Swiss cheese, romaine lettuce, tomato, and dijon mustard on home made French bread. The bread was the star of the meal. The crust was a little crunchy but the inside was soft and chewy. The half sandwich ended up being the right size for me today. On a normal day, I would go with the full one, but with my nerves playing tricks on my stomach, the half sandwich was just right.
The sandwich didn’t come alone. There was also a pickle spear wrapped up with it and there was a small bag of potato chips. I don’t think the chips were home made, but they were a good compliment to the sandwich.
Wealthy Street Bakery is one of those great neighborhood places. Wealthy Street is an up and coming area just outside of downtown Grand Rapids and it’s a very walkable area. It’s always nice to have options that aren’t deep fried and greasy and even better when those options are as good as the Wealthy Street Bakery.