Althea Bread is a small cottage bakery in the woods of southern Albemarle County. Husband and wife team Andrew and Susan Bayker run the business from their home: a small, rustic cabin named Althea. A passion for baking with whole grains led Andrew to start baking every week for a few friends in May of 2018. In January 2019 we started selling bread and pastries at the IX Winter Market in Charlottesville and have been struggling to keep up with demand ever since. It seems like almost weekly we find a way to coax a few more loaves of bread out of our tiny production space. We feel so blessed to be able to do what we love and spread the joy of local, freshly milled flour to the community of Charlottesville.
Althea in Greek means wholesome and healing. We started Althea Bread because we wanted to make bread using fresh, wholesome and delicious ingredients. For us, that had to mean starting with the whole grain. We use a small stone mill to turn whole grains into fresh flour the week we bake for maximum flavor and nutrition. All of our breads and pastries are at least 50% fresh-milled flour. Our bread is fermented with a natural levain over a long period of time, unlocking nutrition and creating flavor. We are committed to using local, organic grains whenever possible. By supporting local farmers, we keep dollars in our own community and support the people around us who care the most about our health and the health of our natural world.