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Scowler finally finds rye bread – what now?

On June 13, 1999, I declared to the world that we were leaving San Francisco, essentially due to the lack of good rye bread.

Since then, we have traveled the world in search of the perfect, yet elusive loaf. We’ve had corn rye on the East Coast, great rye breads in Munich, and finally ended up in Cologne, whose native roll, the Roggelchen, is – you guessed it – a perfect rye bun. We finally did it. Our quest for rye bread is over.

But now what? Sure, we can eat rye bread and drink kölsch beer for the rest of our life – but what good is that when you can’t express to the people around you how superior this bread is in comparison to the bread in other places? Sure, rye bread is great – and the bagels here are passable, but you know what, all the time I was searching for rye bread, I lost sight of what was truly important in life:


Sure, a fantastic rye bread is truly one of the amazing things in life, but what good is it if you can’t find a good turkey breast and a ripe avocado to put on it? As great as the bread out here is, let’s just face it, they just don’t make great sandwiches in Germany.

First of all, they slather butter on them. Sorry, but ham and cheese needs mayo, not butter. Sure, they have subways here, but they’re so pre-processed, it’s like eating mildly flavored calorie-laden air… and they’re American anyway. You can’t get a decent burger, cheesesteak, grinder, sub, hoagie, or even a decent PB&J because for some reason they don’t like peanut butter and the only grape jelly you can find is smuckers for 6 euros a jar that’s imported in from the states.

They have the bread, but don’t know what to do with it.

In San Francisco, a decent rye is still hard to find, but you can’t swing a hippie by his dreadlocks without hitting either a coffee shop or a sandwich place. It makes me think that rye is just isn’t as important as other things in life.

Like sourdough.

Sure, it’s hard to find good rye in San Francisco, but it’s impossible to find sourdough in Germany. Or good freshly baked cookies. Or root beer. Or even a passable attempt at pastrami.

Call me crazy, but all of the rye bread in the world just doesn’t matter when you are eating a nice cheesesteak covered with hot peppers and onions.

So, we are officially declaring the search for rye bread over and you know what?

Sometimes you can go back home.

Posted in General Ramblings.

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