Jacka Bakery located on Southside Street in the Barbican area of Plymouth is the oldest bakery in the UK and has been baking since the 1600’s.
They are said to have supplied the pilgrims who sailed on the Mayflower to America and were here at the time of Drake sailing against the Spanish Armada.
That last bit seems incredible to me as apparently one of my ancestors sailed with Drake at that time so they could well have been standing waiting for bread from this place hundreds of years before I stood at the same spot today.
When we visited and even before we had a chance to peer in through the window at the amazing looking baked goods we had figured that the place must be a bit special just because of the people standing in line outside waiting to get in.
The words chalked onto the shelves that we could see as we waited added more credence to that belief as we read “Fresh, Local, Organic”, “Handmade Traditional Pastries”, “Homemade Cakes” and “Award Winning”
A man standing in front of us was carrying two big baskets and we joked to ourselves that he was going to get everything and leave us with nothing. It was almost true as he was collecting two baskets of these incredible looking Sourdough Bread Loaves that we could see in the window and were drooling over. Happily his order came from out the back and there was still plenty left for the rest of us punters out front.
I was after some of the pastries and my eyes were firmly fixed on on of their twirls, cinnamon or raisin was the main decision to be made, but in between I had to avoid the distraction and temptation from the multitude of the other baked items first
MORE CAKES AND PASTRIES IN WINDOW
I had already spyed the Pain aux raisin twists in the window and was pretty much set on getting one of those. I was sorely tempted as well to get one of the eccles cakes as they just looked so good
Inside though there was just so many great bakes as well to choose from. It was probably a good thing that we were only allowed in one at a time because of the social distancing as I was conscious of the people waiting outside and I was trying to be quick and efficiently
PAIN AUX RAISIN
In the end though we just got a couple of these marvellous Pain aux raisin twirls. These were really very good indeed, one of the best I have ever eaten. I liked that you could unwind the twirl as you ate it, the pastry was flaky and perfectly cooked. The glaze and the melted raisin poking out of the top were sweet and sticky and it was a total delight to eat.
We took ours away and ate on the Coastal footpath to keep our spirit and energy up, it was great eaten with a view of the sea but I would have enjoyed it just as much sat on a bench by the harbour nearby.
I really want to try some of the bread and more of their pastries, so next time we are in town we will be hitting up this place big time!
Jacka bakery is located at 38 Southside St, Plymouth, PL1 2LE not far from the Plymouth GIN distillery and right in the heart of the Barbican. You can check them out on their Facebook page, their Instagram profile, and on their Twitter feed