If the About page wasn’t enough, and you wanted more depth about our name, here it goes.
A mother sponge is an active symbiotic relationship of wild yeast and bacteria that lives in a mixture of flour and water, and must be fed regularly to continue living and helping bakers make bread. The bacteria produces lactic acid, which gives sourdough its tangy taste. By our estimation – MOTHER since it produces bacterial offspring, and SPONGE because it gets bubbly & looks like a sponge.
Besides making bread taste awesome, we think it’s pretty amazing that a mother sponge can hypothetically live forever! Boudin in San Francisco claims to use the same sourdough starter they used 150 years ago during the Gold Rush era. As the story goes, they rescued their starter in a bucket during the Great 1906 San Francisco Earthquake before fire enveloped their bakery and most of the city. So, as a mother sponge can live forever, we always aspire to create timeless work.
We believe it’s an authentic miracle that dough rises naturally through the living symbiotic relationship between wild yeast and bacteria. With that in mind, we love working collaboratively with you clients out there. You know your business and your customers best, so the work will always be better if you are engaged in the design process.
More sourdough lore to come…
Around 1500 AD, Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo wrote Las sergas de Esplandián. The novel introduced the world to Calafia, an Amazonian warrior-queen who ruled over the fabled Isle of California, helping ignite a search for a terrestrial paradise by the legions under Hernan Cortez rule.
We were pretty fascinated by this story, and especially how a piece of literature ended up creating the place name for where we live. The story inspired the work we produced for Calafia – an estate grown organic olive oil from California.
We thought a mythical warrior-queen was the perfect inspiration for an olive oil with high aspirations that could capture the idea of California – a land where a shot at the good life has continued to draw attention across the globe for over 500 years.
It started with the myth of Calafia and her golden riches prompting conquistadors seeking immortal status in the Spanish court, continued with the America’s Manifest Destiny and the Bear Flag Revolt of 1846, got into a fervor with Sutter’s Mill and the Gold Rush of the 1850s, found a new face with the golden age of Hollywood from the 1920s to 1960s, mellowing into the free spirited Summer of Love in San Francisco during 1967, and shocked the financial world during Silicon Valley’s .com boom and bust from 1995-200… (just to name a few more notable).
California holds an experience with much more depth than can be put into a few words (although Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo obviously hit a nerve). But something about this place keeps bringing people back, sometimes with violence and greed, sometimes with love and beauty, but always with great passion.
Here’s a much deeper look at the myth of Calafia from the always-addictive wikipedia.