Though slightly off the beaten path, Cascade Baking Company is located centrally enough in Salem that a picnic could easily be made and delivered to Riverfront Park.
Owners Stephen Perkins and his wife, Debra Edwards, opened the bakery 9 years ago. They built the business on their own, as well as the brick oven, which is heated early each morning and stays hot all day.
Stephen worked for the state before opening the Cascade, but owned a bakery nearly 30 years ago in San Diego.
According to Perkins, their ‘Salem Sourdough’ is the best “this side of San Jose.” Several varieties of bread are baked every day including whole wheat, cinnamon raisin, herb breads, rye, baguettes, ciabatta, and a cracker-thin rosemary flatbread, any one of which patrons may smell upon walking into the restaurant.
They also make several pastries and desserts which include: scones, Gooey Butter Coffee Cake, a St. Louis specialty, cookies, Nanaimo bars, and many others. Breakfast baguettes, which consist of meat and cheese rolled up in dough and baked together, are available in the morning.
Perkins and Edwards are passionate about using only local ingredients and supporting the local economy. Cascade Baking uses flour grown in the Northwest, locally-grown fruit and cider from Daum’s. In turn, many restaurants around town such as Wild Pear, La Capitale and Adam’s Ribs are using Cascade’s breads.
In addition to breads and pastries, Cascade offers several sandwiches, paninis, salads, and soups at lunch time. Cheese made locally at Willamette Valley Cheese Company is also available at the store.
Cascade Baking Company is located at 229 State St. The bakery’s hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays, but arrive there early to get the best selection of bread. Most Saturdays the Ron Kilde band plays “Jazz for Lunch” from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.