Are you looking for a family-friendly restaurant with a community feel? Because you’re in luck! Daily Bread and Mercantile, nestled in the heart of Central Washington, is your next lunch destination. Located in Ellensburg, this restaurant is a local secret and the perfect stopping point for your next road trip through the state. And while currently, Daily Bread is operating under a slightly different model than before due to the COVID-19 orders, guests are still able to grab delicious lunch options, stop in for a loaf of bread or even order their staples such as spices or flour ahead of time.
Daily Bread has been serving customers with healthier breakfast and lunch options for almost eight years according to Kyra Brubaker, employee and daughter of owners, Dana and Matt Wise.
“We want this place to be something that people feel welcomed in,” said Brubaker. “Our employees are on the same page as us in that they want to make people’s day.”
This motto has been put into action, starting right when you walk in the door. Part of the training that the employees receive includes learning the importance of making a connection with each person, whether it be through mannerisms or remembering a regular customer’s name.
Even if you are just passing through town, you will feel welcomed and a part of the community once inside.
Daily Bread — Literally
Aside from the atmosphere, the Daily Bread menu is filled with a variety of items made from recipes developed by owner Dana Wise.
“A lot of the things that you’d see on the lunch menu would be between my mom and I,” said Brubaker. “Some are really old family recipes.” Others are classics that have been adapted.
Each meal is handcrafted by the employees, and according to Brubaker, they avoid all processed or canned foods.
“We want it to be fresh as possible,” she explained, which means that a lot of the items are seasonal to provide the customer with only the best ingredients.
As the seasons change so does the menu, but there are many signature items that you’ll want to check out year-round.
A Delicious Menu
One staple, especially for customers looking for a healthy sandwich option, is the classic, Very Veggie. From the fresh, juicy vegetables, to the delicious pesto spread, this staple has it all. Each sandwich on the menu also comes with a choice of cheese and type of fresh-baked bread. Anywhere from sourdough to sweet brown, every loaf of bread is created from Dana’s recipes and are baked daily to uphold their freshness ideal.
“They have been changed over the years and adapted but all of those are my mom’s recipes,” said Brubaker. “Some of them go way back to when she was baking when I was born, to new recipes she’s created.” These generational recipes are a part of what has made Daily Bread a hot spot in Ellensburg.
The shop also offers many popular options to suit any dietary needs, such as Keto soups and lettuce wraps, to name a few. Guests can choose from sandwiches, wraps, salads and soups and pair their meal with a fresh fruit smoothie or one of the many incredible baked goods offered. Daily baked good offerings including cinnamon buns, scones, cupcakes and slices of pie.
A Look into the Mercantile
In addition to their mouthwatering menu items, half of the restaurant is a shopping destination for all things spices, teas, baking supplies, candies and more!
Brubaker explained, “We love the fact of having bulk candies and foods,” to provide people with more than just the dining experience. Customers can almost always be spotted perusing the aisles of endless treats while they wait for their food.
A lot of these items are sourced in the Pacific Northwest, including their infamous wall of spices. “We get our spices from the Oregon Spice Company,” said Brubaker. “We really took a lot of thought into where we buy our spices. We really fell in love with their company and what they stand for.”
Any spice you need — cumin, bay leaves, chili flakes — they have in stock for cheaper and in higher quantity than most grocery stores.
Also, if you’re just stopping by for a quick visit and are in need of some yummy car-ride snacks, you will definitely want to look through their products. From the crunchy caramel corn to the endless amounts of gummy candies to the yogurt-covered pretzels, there is something bound to entice your sweet tooth.
A Message to the Customers
Not only does the welcoming atmosphere, fresh menu items and wide array of products make Daily Bread unique, but so does the message behind its creation. “The real meaning behind Daily Bread and Mercantile comes from scripture,” said Brubaker.
She explained that the origins of the name are both literal and figurative as the term ‘daily bread’ is derived from the Bible but also refers to their restaurant’s signature item — bread.
“We bake bread every single day,” said Brubaker. “We are baking bread and selling it but we also want to give something a lot more meaningful to people. Whether that is showing God’s love to people or just to have a smile on our face that is encouraging to others … We want people to feel loved.”
This idea of spreading love is translated in every visit through food, community and connection. Whether you are craving creamy clam chowder or a fresh garden salad, there is something for everyone to enjoy at Daily Bread.
Photos: Madeline Wilson and Daily Bread & Mercantile