Bread store closing after 4 decades in Kansas City subway



Great Harvest Bread Co.’s hot cross buns.

Great Harvest Bread Co.

After 40 years in the Kansas City market, the area’s Great Harvest Bread Co. franchise will close.

Sarah and Brian Berlin purchased the current location — in Corinth Square at 4002 W. 83rd St., Prairie Village — in 2015. They plan to close when operations end on May 11.

“Juggling a family and the pandemic, we just decided that’s no longer a good choice,” said Sarah Berlin. “I love people, I love talking to people and I love cooking. I love every aspect of it. So it’s heartbreaking, devastating.

The franchise bakes its bread from scratch daily, including Cinnamon Chip, Honey Whole Wheat, White Harvest, and Challah (based on a customer’s family recipe). Also on the menu: sandwiches, muffins, scones, cookies and bars, and buns. And it sells granola, pancake mix, dog biscuits and other specialty items.

The area franchise opened in south Kansas City in the fall of 1981 before moving to 95th Street and Nall Avenue in Overland Park, then to its current location under various owners.

Berliners posted the closing on Facebook on Thursday: “It was our honor to serve you and your family. Thank you for your loyalty and for keeping us alive over the past few years. We’d love to make your favorite recipes one more time, so submit a request and we’ll be happy to pull the recipe from our archives and bake it for you – ingredients permitting.

So far, customers have requested salted herbs, sunflower wheat, coconut bread, baked potato bread, Irish soda bread and peanut butter cookies.

Fans also left comments about the fence:

“I’m sorry to hear that. You were the best and every time I came back to Kansas I tried to go. There are other Great Harvest locations, but yours was THE Great Harvest location.

“My heart sank reading this. I’ve been enjoying your delicious bread since your first day in business. My mom used to drive us and nothing was better than bringing home a bag of breadsticks and eating a few -one on the way back. The perfect cookies. The best wheat breads. So many delicious memories. We will miss you so much!”

“So disgusted. Love your EVERYTHING. Like can’t choose just one thing.

“Great Harvest has been such a treasure for Prairie Village and beyond! We will miss you very much, I’m sure. (And who’s going to make my challah recipe for KC now?)”

The Berliners currently have five employees, but have had as many as 15. Sarah knows many of her customers by name and favorite orders.

“We are the third owners and we have been very honored to serve generations of families,” she said. “We have people who have grown up eating our bread all their lives.”

There is also a Great Harvest Bread Co. store in Lawrence under various owners.

This story was originally published April 22, 2022 12:55 p.m.

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Joyce Smith has been covering restaurant and retail news for The Star since 1989 under the Cityscape brand. She appreciates topical advice.


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