Based in Boston, Flour began as a result of pastry chef and owner Joanne Chang’s passion for sweets. Today, the brand boasts eight bakery-café units. Open most days through three dayparts, the restaurant features a menu that is split into two categories: Sweet, consisting of baked breakfast goodies like the famous sticky bun, as well as tarts, pies, cookies, and cakes; and Savory, featuring salads, grain bowls, and sandwiches.

When Flour first opened 18 years ago, Chang offered just one sandwich bread. Now the brand offers six, along with three artisan breads—plus rolls—for retail sale. Menu items showcasing that bread selection include the Mozzarella + Mortadella sandwich with housemade mozzarella, arugula-pistachio pesto, cherry pepper crema, and tomato on sesame focaccia, and the house roast beef sandwich with crispy onions and horseradish mayo on ciabatta.

What sets Flour apart is its freshness, Chang says. “We push our bread production so that bread is baked as close to serving as possible,” she says. “We do not have an overnight bread shift, and most of the bread is out of the oven a few hours before we make sandwiches with it. … I know it’s a reason we are popular—nothing beats a sandwich made on homemade, fresh bread.”

In the future, Chang sees the quick-service market moving away from processed grains and toward more unique whole varieties, which works just fine for her taste. “I’ve had our multigrain sourdough every morning for breakfast for the last 18 years,” she says.

Menu Innovations, Story