There are two things I fiercely love (besides Pokémon Go): well-executed pastries and sneakers. On Friday, I experienced both in one setting. Allbirds, a New Zealand shoe company, collaborated with one of my favorite SF institutions, Craftsman & Wolves. Not only did they create a special sneaker based on the iconic Rebel Within pastry, we also got to watch the pastry being demoed in the new Craftsman & Wolves space in Bayview – the Den.
The Craftsman & Wolves Den is more than just a production kitchen with a cozy exterior. It’s a lab, where Chef William Werner and his staff test ideas of all shapes and sizes. It was there that his signature pastry—the Rebel Within—was born, and he was kind enough to walk us through the kitchen, the process, and the finished product, complete with an oozing yolk of deliciousness.
For those of you who haven’t seen or tried the Rebel Within, it’s deceptively simple to make. At its core, it’s a muffin stuffed with an egg. But in true Craftsman & Wolves fashion, every step is meticulous, from the sifted flour to the precisely soft-boiled egg to the blast freezers to keep the muffins from overcooking while the eggs stay soft. It requires care and patience, two qualities that Chef William embodies in all his work.
I had also had the opportunity to sample current and upcoming confections at the Den. Raspberry pecan blondies, coconut banana bread, gougeres, lemon saffron bread, and raspberry pate de fruits are either on the menu or will be soon. Chef has already begun recipe testing for holiday products as well, further showing how much work goes into crafting something as unique as Craftsman & Wolves.
While the Den is off the path, it’s worth a visit, as it’s the only location that isn’t overflowing with people. It’s easy to enjoy a coffee and pastry by the sun-filled windows while enjoying the vibrant artwork of Heather Day on the walls. Thank you to Allbirds for the cool tour and cool kicks!
Craftsman & Wolves: The Den
1598 Yosemite Avenue (Bayview)
Open M – F 7am – 5pm