When Dallas restaurants tout using local producers, chances are good that they're serving loaves prepared by Empire Baking Company.
The family-owned and run bakery makes each loaf of bread from scratch daily, hand-shaping them using traditional starters and techniques and only the highest-quality ingredients — never any preservatives. In fact, Empire has seven different starters in production, using old European fermentation techniques that distinguish each bread flavor from the other.
In addition to fresh bread, Empire also turns out pastries made with European butter, grab-and-go salads, specialty items, and sandwiches (many of loving word has been said about the pastrami pimento cheese sandwich).
Manager Tamie Hoffman considers Empire to be an important part of the community, and stresses that they only create the kind of food they'd feel good feeding their own family. She and the staff are known for their friendly attitude and willingness to help, whether that means suggesting a certain bread for special occasions or helping with recipes using their products.
"We have many customers that we see daily at our Inwood Village location," Hoffman says. "The people here are not only our customers, but also our friends."
From Empire's vegan salad to its 48-hour fermented sourdough that's gluten-intolerant-friendly, there's something for everyone. Of course, you can't forget about the famous smoked turkey sandwich and trail mix cookie — with goodies like these and everything that Empire makes, it's true that time really does make a difference.