PSST! - They Knead It, We Want It!



Panera Bread makes more than a dozen types of artisan bread. The Palm Springs restaurant/store (shown here) opened in March at Gene Autry Trail and Ramon Road; the La Quinta location on Highway 111 just east of Adams Street opened a year ago.

COURTESY PANERA BREAD

To Herbert Hoover’s “a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage,” add “a loaf of bread in every arm” — Panera Bread’s registered mission statement.

The Missouri-based company has opened a Palm Springs location, its second in the desert (the first was La Quinta).

What sets Panera apart is the combination of an artisan bakery and restaurant — and the transparency that is missing from most chain operations. Check out Panera’s Web site (www.panerabread.com) and discover not only the characteristics of great handcrafted bread, but also financial data, bios of the company officers, and a list of ingredients and nutritional breakdown of everything on the menu. 

Perhaps you don’t care about the 39 percent ROI, where the CFO went to college, or that a 2-ounce serving of country bread contains 5 grams of protein. But you might be interested in knowing that Panera sells artisan bread as a loaf, baguette, demi, bowl, roll, and miche. Or that they also make bagels, scones, muffins, brownies and cookies, and other baked goods; individual-sized soufflés; sandwiches; salads; soups (five choices every day); and frozen and hot coffee drinks.

The Palm Springs location makes “Dough-Nations” of unsold bread to AIDS Assistance Program, Well in the Desert, and American Cancer Society. The La Quinta location donates unsold bread to Coachella Valley Rescue Mission.

— Janice Kleinschmidt

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