Made in RVA is an RVABlog feature where we talk to the makers, the doers, the dreamers and builders in the Richmond Region. Today we're talking to Sub Rosa Bakery in Church Hill.
WHAT: Sub Rosa Bakery
WHO: Evrim Dogu
WHY: It's an old-world wood fired bakery in a hip neighborhood
Evrim Dogu grew up in the restaurant business and swore he would never open one himself. But, he went to a baby shower in Church Hill a few years ago and there was a perfect corner location two doors down. The building, which opens on to a traffic circle, was for rent and Dogu saw potential to build a home base to make the bread recipes he'd been perfecting in his father's northern Virginia pizza ovens. He also saw potential in a neighborhood on the rebound and reasoned to himself that a bakery wasn't technically a restaurant.
Dogu eventually bought the building which included his apartment upstairs, his sister slash business partner's apartment and a space where he hopes to house apprentices. Dogu has to live upstairs because his old-world wood fired stove requires 24-hour attention.
Sub Rosa specializes in traditional, naturally leavened breads that hark back to days when his oven technology was cutting edge. You can taste his efforts and reverence for the old methods in the bread; which comes off the rack warm, even at 9 a.m., and spongy with just enough tang. Dogu goes out of his way to ensure that every step of the process is done in house, going so far as to mill his own grain. Sub Rosa also sources locally whenever possible and ensures that every ingredient, organic sugar and butter, stand up to strict quality and ethical standards. They've also got some of the best croissants in town.
Sub Rosa serves coffee specially roasted for them by locals Black Hand.
We suggest checking them out, buying a pastry and strolling over to Libby Hill park for a gorgeous overview of the skyline. Once the sun goes down, have a drink and some dinner at the Roosevelt across the street.
Previously in Made in RVA.
Evrim was kind enough to send along Sub Rosa's Sugar Cookie Recipe!