Red Truck Bakery – For the Love of Bread

Goodlifer: Red Truck Bakery

Before Brian Noyes started baking for a living, he was the Art Director of several national magazines including Smithsonian and House & Garden. When a new job took him to Washington, D.C. Noyes and a friend bought a small farm in the Virginia village of Orlean, 50 miles west of the capital. They planted fruit trees and roamed the countryside in a red 1954 Ford farm truck that Noyes bought from fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger.

Mostly for fun, Noyes started making jams at the farm on Saturdays. He designed a “Red Truck” label for the jars and started selling them at a local shop. They sold well and the store owner loved them, as did the customers. Soon, Noyes was at home making dozens of loaves of breads, pies and pastries on Friday nights to meet the demand. One Saturday as he was driving the red truck to drop off baked goods at the shop, he saw people had gathered in the parking lot — half an hour before the store opened — waiting for his bread. That sealed the deal.

Brian Noyes with his baked goods, in front of the red truck he bought from Tommy Hilfiger.

Brian Noyes with his baked goods, in front of the red truck he bought from Tommy Hilfiger.

The bread that put the Red Truck Bakery on the map: a big soft loaf of our harvest wheat, full of bran, grains, golden raisins, cranberries and walnuts.

The bread that put the Red Truck Bakery on the map: a big soft loaf of our harvest wheat, full of bran, grains, golden raisins, cranberries and walnuts.

The Red Truck Bakery is located in a renovated 1921 Esso filling station in the heart of Old Town Warrenton, Virginia, close to area farmers and their organic and naturally-grown produce and dairy products. The bakery is a proud participant in the Piedmont Environmental Council’s Buy Fresh, Buy Local campaign, and customers can lunch on fresh sandwiches and hearty soups made from local, seasonal ingredients. The breads, pastries, and jams are made using the freshest fruit and dairy items available from nearby farms because “we want to know where our ingredients are coming from, how they were raised and whom to thank.”

The newly opened bakery in Old Town Warrenton, Virginia.

This authentic French gruyere quiche was specifically mentioned when The New York Times included the Red Truck Bakery in their annual round-up of the best online food purveyors in the US.

Red Truck also sells honey from a local farm they found, just up the road, after searching the Piedmont far and wide for good, truly local honey. Michael and Donielle Rininger of Fern Hill Apiary in Marshall, Virginia make honey that is 100% raw and unprocessed — like the bees intended it to be.

Left: The jam that started it all. Right: local raw honey from Fern Hill Apiary in Marshall, Virginia.

Left: The jam that started it all. Right: local raw honey from Fern Hill Apiary in Marshall, Virginia.

Noyes has trained with renowned American chef Rick Bayless and at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, L’Academie de Cuisine outside of Washington, D.C. and King Arthur Flour in Norwich, Vermont. His seasonal pies are all limited edition and highly coveted, and his Moonshine Double-Chocolate Cake, made with rye spirits from nearby Copper Fox Distillery in Sperryville, Virginia, is mighty popular. There’s nothing quite like the combination of booze and cake.

Left: intense Flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake. Right: the famous Moonshine Double-Chocolate Cake.

Left: intense Flourless Chocolate Truffle Cake. Right: the famous Moonshine Double-Chocolate Cake.

Authentic French Madeleines with a hint of lemon (and lovely packaging).

Authentic French Madeleines with a hint of lemon (and lovely packaging).

Left: fruity foccacia filled with golden raisins and cranberries and topped with turbinado sugar. Right: pumpkin pie sweetened with Red Truck's own homemade caramel sauce, which gives the pie a extra dimension and lighter texture.

Left: fruity foccacia filled with golden raisins and cranberries and topped with turbinado sugar. Right: pumpkin pie sweetened with Red Truck’s own homemade caramel sauce, which gives the pie a extra dimension and lighter texture.

If you rarely pass by Warrenton, the Red Truck Bakery offers many of the goods for online ordering (with shipping nationwide via second-day delivery). Either way, make sure to check out the weekly cookie schedule. This Thursday is White Chocolate Chip Macadamia and Orange Poppyseed, mmmm.

About author
A designer by trade, Johanna has always had a passion for storytelling. Born and raised in Sweden, she's lived and worked in Miami, Brooklyn and, currently, Ojai, CA. She started Goodlifer in 2008 to offer a positive outlook for the future and share great stories, discoveries, thoughts, tips and reflections around her idea of the Good Life. Johanna loves kale, wishes she had a greener thumb, and thinks everything is just a tad bit better with champagne (or green juice).
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