Edwin Baltzley did what many Americans did around the country when the COVID-19 pandemic’s shutdown caused the walls to close in and the outside world to loom tantalizingly beyond our windows.
Day in and day out, Baltzley started baking bread. Only, he didn’t bake an array of croissants, rye loafs, focaccia or banana. Baltzley baked one bread, known as the primordial leaven of all bread – sourdough.
Three times a day for a month, loaf after loaf, Baltzley baked sourdough. Perfecting and tweaking until one day, a warm, flour-dusted mass emerged from oven that stood out from all of the others. Crispy crust and soft, chewy center with a wine-like complexity of acidity and texture – the perfect sourdough.
From that sourdough came St. Augustine’s newest post-pandemic restaurant, Sunday.
The soul of the community-focused eatery is of the essence of sourdough itself. Wholesome, locally sourced ingredients with a neighborhood gathering table ambience. Well-known local artist, Jenna Alexander, not only showcases her work along the walls of Sunday but shares a studio within it. On any given day, patrons may see her working through the glass partition that divides the eatery from her working studio.
Baltzley himself is also invested in the St. Augustine community where he lives and works. Prior to opening Sunday, Baltzley owned and operated The Bullet food truck, located outside the St. Augustine Amphitheater. He is a classically trained chef who before starting his own business was the head chef of the Palm Valley Fish Camp.
Wife and co-owner, Misty Lake, designed the interior of the space with natural elements and clean lines, invoking a homey, family-kitchen atmosphere.
“Rather than reject the verbiage associated with being closed during COVID-19, we decided to embrace it as a gentle reminder that community and gathering, in the sense of sharing and support, still exists,” Lake said. “Our mission was always to create and sustain a restaurant with ‘soul’ for its community, one that reflects its locality and provides for its neighborhood. We wanted to invest in locally sustainable harvested food, with an emphasis on excellence, while providing gracious, genuine hospitality. This is a place to nourish and bring family and friends together.”
Sunday’s menu is designed around sourdough, featuring roasted shiitake and oyster mushroom toast, a sourdough B.A.L.T and braised egg Shakshuka. The restaurant is open for both breakfast and lunch, as well as “late-night” eats and drink specials on Fridays and Saturdays.