Tartine Bakery and Blue Bottle Coffee Call Off Merger
The merger of Tartine Bakery and Blue Bottle Coffee has officially been called off...,
The news that Tartine Bakery was in talks to merge with Blue Bottle Coffee was met with more than a just a little skepticism. The idea that Chad Robertson's bread mystique would even consider a seat with Oakland based Blue Bottle was not one something most Tartine aficionados could stomach.
Announced last April it has taken this long for Chad Robertson and Elisabeth Prueitt, owners of Tartine and James Freeman, head of Blue Bottle, to came to the same conclusion their clientele had already made for them.
I was on the, "this will never work" side of the equation from the simple point of view that the Tartine Bakery already had the best formula - muscling in coffee as an equal "branding" to Tartine bread seemed somehow obscene.
Tartine is busy with new operations in San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Tokyo. That's enough to keep anyone's plate full for the next several years. Blue Bottle has similar dreams but will have to pickup the "eats" part of their formula with someone else.
Locally, the new operation plan is to open a restaurant/bakery named the "Tartine Manufactory", on 18th Street in the Mission District by next spring. The "new' part of their plan is to also mill fresh flour, hence the word "Manufactory".
One of the nouveau treasures of San Francisco has been preserved and has adapted its growth by listening to how their customers and friends felt about the deal and in the end nixed it. Bravo Tartine!