UPDATE: Grateful Bread Baking Co. – High Point
UPDATE: 7/26/11 – I have some sad news for North Carolina foodies. The Grateful Bread Baking Company in High Point closed its doors on July 7th, 2011 for what seems like the last time. Its assets were seized by the North Carolina Department of Revenue for failure to pay sales and withholding taxes for over $40,000. It was a sad day for me because Grateful Bread has been one of my family’s favorite places to meet for lunch for the past couple of years. Their food was great and everyone who worked there was great. I hate to see such a great restaurant fail.
When you step through the door of the Grateful Bread Baking Co. in High Point, you would expect to walk into a place that is plastered with tour posters from the Jerry Garcia-era. However, there isn’t anything even remotely related to the band with the exception of the chill vibe that the restaurant gives off and the idea of . There are paintings and photographs from local artists on the wall in the dining room and the entrance is very homey with vines & potted plants on the exterior. It has a very natural feel to it that makes it a relaxing place to have lunch and hang out with friends.
Known by locals as “The Bread”, it is definitely one of the hot spots for local business lunches as well as just meeting friends for a quick lunch. There are about 12-15 tables varied in size in the main dining room as well as some outdoor two-tops for when the weather is good. The parking lot can get chaotic at times especially when the restaurant is busy. You should try to get there early in the day because they only serve a limited amount of food each day and periodically run out of their daily specials or deli salads.
The bakery produces a variety of tasty items like pimento cheese scones, granola, chocolate chip cookies, lemon bars, fresh loaves of bread, muffins, dog treats (my dogs love ‘em) and bagels. They also have some of the best pimento cheese, tuna salad and chicken salad in town that you can get by the pound to take home with you. The shelf-life of the bakery goods isn’t the same as store bought goods because the Grateful Bread uses all-natural ingredients with no preservatives but that normally isn’t an issue for me because I tend to eat everything I buy a lot quicker than I planned on when I bought them.
I am usually hard pressed to order anything else at the Grateful Bread other then their chicken salad sandwich. Occasionally, I will get the Grateful Club or the Grateful B.L.T. but I tend to stay true to the chicken salad. It is a made from scratch lemon chicken salad with sprouts (not pictured because they were out that day), lettuce & tomato in between two slices of their birdseed bread. It comes with a side (I recommend pasta salad but they are all good!) and a pickle spear.
If you order something other than the lemon chicken salad, make sure that return to give it a try or you pick up some by-the-pound and a loaf of bread to take home with you so you can try it. You won’t be let down. It costs a lot more than your average chicken salad that you find at the grocery store but it is also ten times better so its worth it.
My dad is a regular up at the Grateful Bread during the week so he has built a relationship with everyone who works there to the point that he is able to order a “Bob Salad”, his name, and they will throw all their freshest ingredients together on top of some greens usually with a balsamic vinaigrette. The ingredients change from day to day so he never really knows what he will be getting yet he never seems to be disappointed in it.
The Grateful Bread isn’t the most inexpensive place in town with the majority of the lunch menu items in the $7 to $8 range but you are paying for quality and freshness which always costs a little bit more than your average McDonald’s Super Sized combo. I have read reviews on Yelp and Google discussing how their food is over-priced but I think the Grateful Bread prices are competitive with any other deli in the area serving similar items.