Good bread for everybody

Lots of people are posting fond memories of Jose Krall, the baker and pastry cook at Maui Bake Shop & Deli, who is missing since his plane crashed Saturday. Here is our favorite.

Jose’s productions were first-rate and priced accordingly. A strawberry dressed up in a tuxedo made of dark and white chocolate, for example, cost about $3. The exception was his baguettes, the bread that is the staff of life for the French.

When a sort of imitation baguette was available at local supermarkets for $3 or so, a genuine, crusty, hard baguette from Jose cost just $1.25. I once asked him why his baguettes were so cheap when his other loaves were priced around $6. I cannot recall his exact words, but the gist was:

“Everyone should be able to afford to eat good bread.”

In his old shop, before his brief retirement, he had a poster that read, in French, “In his (the baker’s) hands, the essence of good bread.” Jose Krall was a master baker who took his craft seriously. He walked the walk.

Jose Krall, picture from The Maui News