American Grain Mills
Wild Hive Farm Community Grain Project
Former beekeeper Don Lewis took to milling 20 years ago and never looked back. He's created a network of farmers in a quest to rebuild a local grains-based food system akin to the one that thrived in the Hudson Valley a century ago. Today, he supplies his stone-ground, sifted flours to New York's Eataly. (Look for him to expand with Eataly to Chicago soon.) Along with wheat, rye, spelt and triticale, all stone-ground to order, he's getting more and more into heirloom corn, such as Otto File, an 8-row variety with huge, orange kernels that's wonderful in polenta, cookies and cornbread. The Wild Hive Blend, basically a mix of everything he mills, plus flax and millet, makes a super-charged porridge. wildhivefarm.com.
Harvest Ridge Organics
Five generations of the McIntosh family have farmed this land in northern Idaho. They stone-grind their own organically grown grains, including the region's famed hard red spring wheat, a high-protein performer for bread baking, and the pasta maker's go-to, durum wheat, both available seasonally. If you give them a call to order, you can also get whole berries, lentils and organic oats. harvestridgeorganics.com.
The "estate flour" goes from seed to bag on this certified-organic family farm near Pittsburgh raising grass-fed beef and lamb, as well as the grains that they eat. Along with rolled oats and polenta, and the rye that's been grown (and distilled) in these parts since 1791 Whiskey Rebellion, their flours for order via email include stone-milled spelt, buckwheat, hard red winter wheat, and Frederick, a soft white winter heritage wheat from New York. All of them express the sweetness of the land's well-fertilized silty loam. Up next in 2016: ancient einkorn and Obsidian emmer, a northern European variety. Book an overnight farm stay, and you can peek in on farmer-miller Nigel Tudor doing his thing. weatherburyfarm.com.
Along with stone-ground, certified-organic whole wheat, buckwheat, barley, and rye, this Williamette Valley farmstead operation also sells triticale, a 19th-century Scottish wheat-rye hybrid that makes a fine loaf with a bit of rye's grassy flavor. Also on offer: rolled oats, whole berries and bran, and for your backyard birds, a hearty grains blend called Chicken Treat.
Sunrise Flour Mill
Former biotech executive Darrold Glanville and his wife Marty launched this mill in 2009 when Glanville found that the bread he had started baking in his retirement made him sick. In his quest for wheat that he could eat, Glanville turned to heritage varieties—Red Fife, Turkey Red—whose gluten structure makes them easier to digest than the modern hybrid wheat. Along with organic flours and whole grains, the Glanvilles sell a 7-grain heritage pancake mix that includes natural-stand Minnesota wild rice grown by Native Americans. sunriseflourmill.com.
Castle Valley Mill
In the 1940s, Mark Fischer's grandfather, a Bavarian miller, immigrated to Bucks County, where he bought a rundown historic mill and started acquiring the equipment to grind grain. Though he never saw the mill in operation in his lifetime, Mark and his wife Fran fulfilled the old man's dream in 2010 when they started restoring and using the machines. Today, they offer Pennsylvania-raised whole and stone-ground grains, including Bloody Butcher corn, a heritage variety that makes a red-flecked, rose-colored polenta with a flowery taste. Most of their business is with bakeries and restaurants—Philadelphia's Fork restaurant is client—but you can also find their flours sold at regional markets like Philly's Reading Terminal. astlevalleymill.com.
An important player in the revival of New York State's historic grain belt, this cooperatively owned mill founded by farmers near Ithaca uses granite stones to grind certified-organic, local wheat, rye, buckwheat and spelt flours, plus corn meal and polenta. The flours are the go-to for New York bakeries like Orwasher's, and whole grains like wheat berries, farro and oat groats are also sold under the Cayuga Pure Organics label at New York City's Greenmarkets. farmergroundflour.com.
Champlain Valley Milling
The Northeast's largest organic mill, this family-owned operation offers roller-, hammer-, and stone-milled flours, plus whole grains including New York—grown freekeh, young green spelt that's been roasted to burn away its hull and chaff, leaving a kernel with a uniquely smoky flavor. champlainvalleymilling.com.
Camas Country Mill
The first gristmill in the Willamette Valley in over eight decades, this operation owned by third-generation farmer Tom Hunton, who grows most of the grains milled, supplies Oregon-grown, whole-grain flours to bakers like The Bread Lab's Jonathan Bethony and restaurants like Blue Hill at Stone Barns, plus locally grown exotic cereals like Tibetan purple karma barley and teff, the tiny grain used to make the spongy Ethiopian bread injera. Visitors are welcome for tours by appointment. camascountrymill.com.
Fairhaven Organic Flour Mill
Originated in 1974 by the members of Bellingham's hippie-run food co-op, this family-owned operation mills both hammer-milled fine- and medium-ground flours, as well as stone-ground flours, from wheat and other grains, including millet, barley and California-grown brown rice, all of them organic. fairhavenflour.com.
Set on reviving New England's traditional grains-based economy, Amber Lambke and Michael Scholz, along with other grassroots organizers, co-founded Maine's annual Kneading Conference and Artisan Bread Fair. The duo runs this stone mill set inside a converted county jail, where they offer organic stone-ground flours of hard red wheat, plus oats and organic buckwheat and rye from farms in the region. They've used the rest of their sprawling, 120-year-old building to start a small business incubator. mainegrains.com.
A water-powered stone mill in operation since 1867, this Utah outfit sources wheat from throughout the country for its range of organic flours, from 100% whole wheat to a fine "00" blend designed for pizza by San Francisco's champion pizzaiola, Tony Gemignani. centralmilling.com.
Bob's Red Mill
The Big Kahuna of artisan mills, Bob's is a massive operation. Visitors can tour the 325,000-square-foot Oregon headquarters, where 22 stone mills grind 24-hours-a-day, turning out 400 products to be sold in 81 countries worldwide. But, despite its size, the employee-owned company remains true to the mission of founder Bob Moore to promote the eating of healthy whole grains. bobsredmill.com.
Hayden Flour Mills
North Dakotan farm boy-turned-Arizona miller Jeff Zimmerman named his outfit after the 19th century mill that once anchored the town of Tempe. Though the old building still stands, Zimmerman's stone mill is located 30 miles southwest of it, on Arizona farmland, open for tours later this year. The specialty here is White Sonora Wheat, brought by Jesuits in the 1700s. Adopted by native Pima Indians, the stretchy glutinous "wafer wheat" proved perfect for tortillas. With the help of southern Arizona's Native Seeds research group and Glenn Roberts of Anson Mills, who supplied the initial seeds to area farmers, Hayden Flour Mills is reviving the cultivation of this desert-friendly heritage grain. haydenflourmills.com.
The #1 booster of heritage grains, Anson Mills' Glenn Roberts helped establish other outfits on this map by supplying seeds and guidance. Back in 1998, he decided to revive the Carolina Gold rice of his mother's Southern youth. His quest took him to bootleggers' fields and small family farms where other rare heirlooms—Carolina Gourdseed White corn, Red May wheat for the graham flour used for biscuits in the antebellum Carolinas—were still growing. Today, Roberts' mission to "repatriate Southern cuisine," as he says, through the grains and seeds of its past has resulted in range of extraordinary products: blue corn grits from crops grown by the Cherokee Nation; Thirteen Colony Rice Waffle Flour, inspired by a favorite pre-Revolutionary food; bennecake flour, from seeds brought by Africans in the 18th century; and more, including rare Italian and Japanese grains. Because Roberts is a stickler for freshness, and oxygen and heat "kill" the grain, he cold-mills to order and vacuum-packs for shipping. A spin through the stories and recipes on his website is an education in itself. ansonmills.com.
In 2008, when wheat prices skyrocketed, former baker Jennifer Lapidus gathered a group of her peers and launched the North Carolina Organic Bread Flour Project to make a connection with local farmers. The result is this gristmill stone-grinding Southern-grown organic grains, including hard and soft red winter wheat; buckwheat; and Wrens Abruzzi rye, an heirloom variety with a pedigree in these parts that dates to before the pre-Civil War. Pros, from F&W star chef Lionel Vatinet of La Farm Bakery in Cary to Tara Jensen of Asheville's scrappy wood-fired Smoke Signals, can vouch for the quality of the flours. carolinaground.com.
Lonesome Stone Milling
Every bag notes the farmer who grew the grain for the organic flours and mixes from this southwest Wisconsin stone-burr mill. Proprietor Gilbert Williams started in 2009 with a 1947 vintage machine to winnow and clean raw grain for local farmers, but he quickly added milling to his operation. The rye as well as the Turkey Red heirloom wheat, a variety brought from Crimea by Mennonites in the 1870s, express the richness of the region's terroir. lonesomestonemilling.com.
Bluebird Grain Farms
Husband-and-wife team Sam and Brooke Lucy sell "plow-to-package" grain grown biodynamically and milled to order on their farm in northern Washington. They specialize in farro, an ancient hulled wheat beloved in Italy. Unlike much farro, which is "pearled," or abraded, to remove its husk, a process that scrapes away some or all of the nutritious bran, the Lucys' emmer and einkorn varieties of farro are de-husked using centrifugal force, keeping the grain—and its flavor and nutrients—intact. bluebirdgrainfarms.com.
Grist and Toll
Pastry chef-turned-miller Nan Kohler's mission is to make whole-grain baking using fresh flours accessible to all of us. To that end, Kohler and her partner Marti Noxon stone-grind locally sourced wheat in the city of Pasadena, just off the 110 Freeway. The shop offers baking classes, and the website provides baking tips and thoroughly explains the properties of each of their changing selection of whole-grain flours, be it Red Fife, perfect for bread; Sonora soft white, good for flatbreads and pizzas; or another variety. gristandtoll.com.
Among the 13 grains milled here are Central Texas red wheat, barley, kamut, and spelt, plus organic blue, white, and Hickory King heritage corn, a heritage variety with huge yellow kernels that make great grits. They're all stone-ground in a 1760s water-powered gristmill moved from New Jersey and lovingly restored by the craftsmen of Homestead Heritage, a Christian agrarian community near Waco. Visitors are welcome to the mill, the farm restaurant, and the rest of the crafts village. homesteadgristmill.com.
Vermont's organic whole grains (not to mention dairy) pioneers, Jack and Anne Lazor have been farming in the Northeast Kingdom since 1975. Along with the yogurt, kefir, and milks that are more widely distributed, their seasonal, farmstead flours and whole grains—spelt, Red Fife heritage wheat, rye, New England's historic flint corn—can be found in co-ops and organic stores throughout Vermont and New Hampshire. butterworksfarm.com.
Small Valley Milling
On their 40-year-old, family-owned farm, Joel and Elaine Steigman mill the certified organic spelt, emmer, einkorn, rye, and wheat they grow to produce flours and de-hulled kernels. New York's popular Bread Alone bakery uses Small Valley's spelt. smallvalleymilling.com.
Goshen Valley Grains
On a sustainable Pennsylvania farm where a keen interest in healthy soil biology leads to exceptionally sweet harvests, this farmstead mill offers stone milled-to-order buckwheat, spelt, and rye flours, plus yellow cornmeal, pancake mixes and whole and unhulled kernels. goshenvalleygrains.com.
Mendocino Grain Project
Farmer and miller Doug Mosel grinds his dry-farmed, organically grown Russian River Valley grains on two beautiful stone mills: a 16-inch Jansen and an A400 Osttiroller. Legendary grains expert Monica Spiller sources from Mosel, who grows rye, spelt, barley, and 10 varieties of wheat, including Blue Beard durum and Sonoran white. But you can't just mail order from him. Look for the grains in bulk at Ukiah Natural Food Co-op when you're in Mendocino; if you're local, join his CSA; or email him and beg for a bag.
Watch it get ground before your eyes on a stone-equipped Osttiroler mill on Fridays at this modern-day grange in Healdsburg, California, where you can also score a home grain mill, a copy of Sara Pitzer's Homegrown Whole Grains, and a set of flour sacks to do it yourself. In the cooler here you'll find fresh-milled flours from a range of drought-resistant, hard red and white wheats and rye grown at local Front Porch and Foxwhelp Farms. Stay for a nosh; SHED uses their own fresh-ground flour in their cookies, waffles, pastries, and crackers. healdsburgshed.com.
Dave and Megan Miller have the last name for the job. The upstart Stone-Mill & Grain Lab of James Beard-nominated baking duo sources local Midwestern grain to turn out fresh flours at Chicago's first artisan mill. And of course they use their own organic flours, grits, and rolled oats in the food at their two cafes. bakermillerchicago.com.