"Brown’s response was soul-searching and eloquent. “I have worked in restaurants and bakeries in this city for over 20 years,” she wrote. “I am a neighborhood local — as is almost every person that works with us at Marla Bakery. And that’s the thing. People. At Marla Bakery, we make almost everything we serve from scratch. By hand. That $2.50 bagel? Rolled by hand. Boiled and then baked by our bakers. The bread? Of which everyone but Challah is less than $8.00 (most loaves are actually $5 or less)? Mixed, shaped and baked by hand, in a wood burning oven fired every day by hand, cleaned out for baking at 3 am every morning ... by hand."
“Making food this way isn’t cheap and you are right, our prices our higher. Our ingredients cost more, our labor going into each product costs more. It will always be less expensive to buy cream cheese than to make our own farmers cheese for our bagels. It will always cost more to grind our own meat for burgers, cure our own pastrami, make our own bread than it would to buy these things pre-made, mass produced. Machines are cheaper than people. We don’t do this to seem elitist, we do this because we think what comes from people’s hands tastes better than what comes from machines.”