Ste. Marie
East Vancouver, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Project Year

Photography - Conrad Brown Styling by Kate Richard


Ste. Marie as Architects

Vancouver Artisan Flour Miller Launches New Bakery And Mill

Flourist, the artisan flour miller and farmer-direct dry goods supplier, opened a 2,800-sq.-ft. bakery and cafe in East Vancouver that showcases Vancouver’s only community-based flour mill.


The new bakery and cafeteria, located at 3433 Commercial St., features a menu of hearty vegetarian meal options, creative sourdough toasts, and other baked goods — all made with flour milled on-site — as well as an assortment of their amazing sourdough loaves to take home. Customers are also encouraged to browse a selection of inspiring cookbooks while enjoying the space before shopping the retail area for their own cooking and baking pursuits.


The 48-seat bakery and cafeteria prominently displays the company’s second flour mill. Customers can see the mill behind picture windows as it grinds grain, sourced from Canadian family farms, into fine flour for immediate use on site. Flourist does not use any white flour in the production of their bread or baked goods, instead opting to use their freshly milled flour exclusively.


The company has been vocal in its stance against processed flours found in grocery stores, which are manufactured in a way that prioritizes shelf-life over flavour and nutrition.


“Everyone at Flourist is thrilled to have opened the doors to our first brick-and-mortar location to bring our vision for high quality, transparent and delicious food to life,” said Shira McDermott, co-founder of Flourist.


“Flourist brick and mortar locations are the next stage of our effort to disrupt the traditional and overly commodified food supply chain, which is particularly egregious in the grain, beans and flour markets,” she said. 


Flourist has already earned a reputation and following for promoting farmers and supplying traceable, farm-direct grains and beans to restaurants, retailers and consumers through the company’s online store at Flourist.com.


McDermott and co-founder Janna Bishop partnered with Craig Stanghetta, principal and creative director at  Ste. Marie Art and Design, to design the new space.


“We wanted the space to feel like standing in a wheat field on a perfect sunny day—a nice counterpoint to some of those grey Vancouver days,” Stanghetta said.


“The emotional seed of this place is bread and sunshine, but we also wanted to somehow reflect the two folks who started Flourist: fun and bright, but also clever, focused, thoughtful and delightful in all kinds of unexpected ways. That certainly speaks to the space and, I believe, also embodies Janna and Shira,” he said.


“To pull it all off we incorporated a mix of a farmhouse sensibility and good Scandinavian design principles. The outcome is a space that should look classic and current but also fresh and fun in the same breath.”


In addition to casual food and bakery items inspired by Flourist's extensive and publicly available recipe collection, Flourist customers can now buy in-store all the items currently available on the company's website, including freshly milled flour. Until now, the stone-ground flour products have only been available online through the Flourist website.


They will continue to wholesale an extensive line of whole grains and beans and freshly-milled flours to their restaurant partners and ship orders to people across North America through the online store.

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