In this special issue, we celebrate Gill and 30 more game-changing craftspeople who are reshaping cuisine in America and abroad by redefining ingredients, drinks, tools, restaurant design, and experiences.

By Hunter Lewis
Updated: February 22, 2019
Clockwise from top left: Cedric Angeles; Eva Kolenko; Ricky Rhodes; Rebecca Stumpf; Justin T. Gellerson; Paul Quitoriano

Slice into Graison Gill’s Country boule from the cover of this issue and you’ll smell a nutty, almost molasses-like earthiness. Take a bite, and the dark brown, caramelized crust gives way to a tender, chewy, tangy crumb. How does Gill deliver such complex flavor with just flour, water, and salt? Good technique and a hot oven help, of course. So does a kicky sourdough starter. But the real difference-maker is more fundamental: Gill bakes with freshly milled flour. 


As writer Rowan Jacobsen details in “The Miller,” Gill fermented a whole-grain revolution in New Orleans when he brought a 3,000-pound stone mill to Bellegarde Bakery. His bakery created a new micro-economy in town, selling freshly milled heirloom grains to local chefs. It also linked him to a network of like-minded bakers, millers, and farmers across the country who are overhauling flour: the most commercial of ingredients which, until recently, hadn’t undergone the artisanal transformation that’s elevated foods like coffee, chocolate, and salt.“It’s all about flavor,” Gill said during a recent visit to Food & Wine’s Birmingham, Alabama, test kitchen. “Freshly milled flour simply tastes better.”


In this special issue, we celebrate Gill and 30 more game-changing craftspeople who are reshaping cuisine in America and abroad by redefining ingredients, drinks, tools, restaurant design, and experiences—and sometimes, like Gill, the supply chains that deliver them. As in-the-know consumers, you and I play a vital role in the equation, too. Support these makers and those in your community. Invest in an even more delicious future.

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