Berkeley: New owners at Hopkins Street Bakery - steak and kidney pie
The best Christmas dessert I had this year was the stollen at Hopkins Street bakery. It is now right up there with Cheeseboard's fruitcake as one of my holiday favorites.
I noticed a sign in the window that said it was under new management. Today when I stopped by I asked if that meant new staff or new owners. They said new owners took over about seven months ago.
It doesn't seem they have changed the baked goods.There didn't seem to be anything new added and all the old favorites were still there. The shop was a different configuaration than my last visit in February. The counters have moved to the back of the store. It makes it seem less cramped.
I've never had steak and kidney pie before, so can't say if it is a good or bad version. In terms of a little pot pie, I liked it The crust was very good and there was a nice mix of beef and chopped kidney pieces.
I gave the bomboli another try given the excellent stollen and new management. Last time it was awful. Today it was much better. Still not the greatest bombolini I've had but it was respectable and pleasant nicely sugared with a dense yeasty donut filled with custard. They are about the size of a golf ball
Hopkins Street Bakery
1584 Hopkins St, Berkeley, CA
re: Mick Ruthven
Their bread menu seems pretty limited -- the other day they had French bread, pain au lait, and many-grain. The latter two were also available as rolls, sold singly for 75 cents if memory serves me right. I got two of the pain au lait rolls and they were very nice; I'd been disappointed by the bread version in the past because it was very dense and too sweet for sandwich use, but I might have to give it another try with the new owners.
I noticed the different layout and wondered about that - thanks for doing the detective work! My favorites -- pumpkin chocolate chip muffin, cranberry morning bun, and sugar cookies -- were just as good last time I was there. The place does seem less cramped but also less charming somehow, and it didn't have quite the same old-time bakery smell. Also, I miss the cute young man who used to work the counter....