Thursday, July 18, 2024

Long Beach’s Gusto bakery a semifinalist for prestigious James Beard award

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Long Beach’s Gusto bakery, the Latin American-centric space that overtly overthrows Eurocentric ideals when it comes to baked goods, has officially become a semifinalist for Outstanding Bakery in the 2024 James Beards awards, the nation’s most prestigious food honors.

Led by carb master Arturo Enciso and Ana Belén Salatino, the pair began offering baked goods out of their home and a clay oven that was in their backyard. Once they scored their brick and mortar on 4th Street, their game and reputation inherently changed: They not only began appearing rightfully at some of Long Beach’s best restaurants, they garnered national attention for everything from kouign ammans layered with nixtamalized corn—a dish that was on our Essential Dishes of 2023 list—and polverones with California walnuts to spelt flour biscuits and fruit galettes.

Shortly after opening. Food & Wine, the long-running cuisine magazine, had not only written about Gusto but deemed it one of the nation’s best bakeries.

Perhaps most notable, Gusto Bread is part of a growing tradition happening throughout Latin America—Panadería Rosetta in Mexico City immediately comes to mind—that decentralizes Europe’s (faulty at best) claim on baked goods, taking on fermentation and proofing techniques from their heritage’s own history and melding them with indigenous grains and ingredients.

In November of 2023, Gusto’s brick and mortar expanded: Joining its beautiful parklet, the bakery officially pushed east into the neighboring part of the building, to offer proprietary Rose Park-roasted coffee and a bit more space. Americanos are replaced with “Xicanos,” fused with pilloncillo syrup and matcha lattes are layered with hoja santa.

Gusto is located at 2710 E. 4th St.

Brian Addison
Brian Addison
Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 25 nominations and three additional wins. In 2019, he was awarded the Food/Culture Critic of the Year across any platform at the National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.

2 COMMENTS

  1. As a sourdough baker myself I have been so impressed with the creativity and authenticity of their products. Lovely people, lovely goodies. Long overdue.

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