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Friday, February 5, 2010

Local Flavor: Gastronom's Khachapuri Keeps Georgia on Our Mind

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2010 at 11:38 AM

click to enlarge Gastronom's counter lady showing off the goods. - C. ALBURGER
  • C. Alburger
  • Gastronom's counter lady showing off the goods.
So what exactly is khachapuri? The classic Georgian cheese bread comes in an array of shapes and sizes depending on region and inspiration. The Russian woman working behind the counter at Gastronom ― an Eastern European deli and bakery in the Outer Richmond ― pushed one on us recently, and curious, we obliged. Gastronom's khachapuri is plate-size, shaped of buttery, flaky dough like a croissant, save for its pointed saltiness. A crumbly, ricotta-like cheese spills out, forming an addictive mess with the fragile pastry. At $3.50 for a large round that would easily feed a small cocktail party, it's a novelty we'll buy again. Come to think of it, next time we host a gathering, we'll offer up khachapuri with fruit chutney and a bottle of Gastronom's Russian vodka, its label scrawled in Cyrillic script we can imagine our guests trying to decipher. Now that's entertainment.

Gastronom 5801 Geary (at 22nd Ave.), 387-4211

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Carolyn Alburger


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