By Alexis Convento, January 2015
We met up with Co-Owner and Head Baker Peter Endriss of Runner & Stone, a new-ish (since 2012) restaurant and bakery that's located just a few blocks from us. We wanted to know what Peter's favorite dish was on the Runner & Stone menu, and when he's not making delicious baked goods, where does he like to go for a bite?
What's your favorite ingredient to work with?Peter Endriss: Local whole grain flours. Baking with local grains means less transportation, which means less petroleum usage. The taste is great, the flour is freshly milled and we enjoy the relationships with our regional producers.
What is your favorite dish on your menu?
Currently, it's the lumache pasta (extruded in house) with monkfish ragu and cannellini beans. The flavor of the sauce is great - just a little spice and a wonderful seafood flavor without being fishy; the lobster quality and texture of the monkfish really comes through. And our fresh extruded pasta has the right amount of bite.
What led you to choose Gowanus as the location for your business?
Gowanus is a conveniently located neighborhood that's on the rise, with great neighbors and a burgeoning food and bar scene.
Runner & Stone recently organized a soup kitchen and volunteer event at 501 Union. Can you tell us a bit about that particular experience? What was your inspiration for the event?
I'm on the Board of CHiPS, a local women's residence and soup kitchen located around the corner from Runner & Stone. The single mothers that we house and the hundreds of people we feed daily are the inspiration for everything we do at CHiPS. The inaugural fundraising event, CHiPS Winter Gala, was held at 501 Union; the gala was an opportunity to thank the hundreds of volunteers that keep CHiPS running every day.
Tell us more about the hashtag you use for the company.
#becomearegular came about one day when we were discussing how great our customers are and how we're lucky to have such dedicated regulars (and how we would love to have more!).
Where do you like to eat when you're not at Runner & Stone?
I've had some great meals in the Gowanus area at The Pines, Littleneck, Pickle Shack and Wangs (with each one satisfying a different experience). Outside of the neighborhood (I live in Manhattan), some of my current favorites are Ippudo, Porsena, and Dorado tacos just south of Union Square.
Here's a few last words from Peter:
"The inspiration we find at Runner & Stone from local producers doesn't stop at the bakery door. All of our whole grain flours are grown organically and milled locally by individuals with whom we're on a first name basis. All of our preserves are made with fruit we select at the farmers' market and our viennoisseries use local, high fat butter and local eggs. Is it challenging to use ingredients that change characteristics with the seasons? Yes. Would we ever turn away from responsibly grown grains and fruit to make our work easier? No. Our love of the craft of baking and all of its associated variability is what wakes us up at 1am and keeps us baking throughout the day so that you can experience a fresh baguette. When was the last time you ate a croissant still warm from the oven?"
Check out Runner & Stone daily Monday through Sunday, offering breakfast, lunch, dinner + brunch at 285 Third Avenue (and Carroll Street), Brooklyn, NY 11215. @runnerandstone #becomearegular for a peek into their world.
Our favorite dish on the menu? The soft pretzel. So buttery, salty and slightly sweet. A perfect compliment to your morning latte or afternoon Pilsner.
Want to volunteer with CHiPS? Learn how to get involved here.