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Huckleberry bakery opens Wednesday

February 16, 2009 |  1:41 pm

Photo_2Rustic Canyon Wine Bar & Seasonal Kitchen owner Josh Loeb and pastry chef Zoe Nathan (the couple just got married) are set to open their new Santa Monica bakery Wednesday morning (Feb. 18).  Huckleberry, which is one block west of Rustic Canyon (the spot was previously a Pick Up Stix and shares ample parking with Santa Monica Seafood), is having a soft opening: The menu and hours will both increase in the coming months. No, the bakery isn't named for the Mark Twain novel: Huckleberry is the name the couple have picked out for their future firstborn. Which, says Loeb, is sort of what this bakery is.

Huckleberry will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner takeout. (For dinner, you can walk up the street -- just follow the staff -- to the restaurant.) The menu includes breakfast items such as pancakes, eggs and pastries; for lunch, sandwiches, soups and salads. There also will be salads from the deli case and, from the rotisserie, whole jidori chicken and whole duck. The coffee beans are from nearby Caffe Luxxe, whose owner was training the staff on the La Marzocca espresso machine last week.

Nathan, who was just named a James Beard semifinalist in the Outstanding Pastry Chef category, is also baking baguettes, ciabattas, brioche and sourdough boules, as well as a long list of sweets and pastries, including seasonal crostata, cookies, biscotti and mini kouign amanns (little Breton cakes).

Huckleberry, 1014 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. www.huckleberrycafe.com (website still under construction); (310) 451-1322. Open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

-- Amy Scattergood

Photo: Amy Scattergood