“I like living in this city – it’s just a pity that you can’t buy any ‘real’ bread around here”, a German student at my faculty sighs. “But you can”, another student tells her. “There’s this French bakery, really close to the inner city library, that sells the most wonderful bread.”
Intrigued by this conversation and driven by a hunger for some good, hearty bread, I walked around the general area of the inner city library to find this mysterious bakery. The first little archway I took brought me to a hidden water mill. A local woman, taking photographs of this romantic setting, seemed to know what I was looking for and sent me a few blocks down towards the inner city. There, she said, I would find the bakery.
Following her directions, I arrived at the Bisschopmolen. Not knowing what to expect, I took the little dark entrance at the end of the building, only to find myself facing a large mill, completely intact and in the process of doing its job while being set in motion by yet another large watermill. Connected to the dark room is a spacious bakery where you can buy not just bread made from their own flour, but also all kinds of scrumptious vlaai, vegetable quiches, or your own baking mix. “We also sell products from farmers in the region, like jams, apple juice and pasta”, the owner Edo Kruijver proudly informed me. With this one-of-a-kind project, he and his colleague Frank van Eeerd aim to tell the story of the farmer, the miller and the baker, as it has been known for centuries. “It was actually initiated by the Gemeente Maastricht itself, wanting to put more emphasis on Maastricht’s watermills”, he explained, while handing out the leftover quiches to a group of students from Hamburg who had appeared just in time to receive a free treat.
On leaving, I found myself satisfied with the free baked goods, but the French bakery, I still hadn’t found. I’ll just have to accompany one of my friends there after 6 pm to receive their popular student discount on raisin bread or traditional homemade wheat-loaf.