My family and I are knee-deep in the middle of a significant move to two different cities – although we will be together in both of them. The last few weeks have involved a tremendous amount of sorting, and, with great joy, discarding, so that we achieve our goal of bringing nothing superfluous to either place. As such, most of my cookware has disappeared into boxes and I have not so much as minced a clove of garlic.

We don’t have the time to go out for a long meal, so we have been eating, appropriately to my final column, in bites. A hunk of cracked wheat bread and a subtly sharp, nutty cheddar. Slices of apples dipped in a jar of (transcendent) honey generously given to me by Alicia O’Connell, a former colleague and co-owner of Briggs Farm in Somerville. Handfuls of granola and the remaining chocolate from our trip to Porto in Portugal. Giant green olives. Hummus and julienned cucumber. The last of the baguettes from the freezer, toasted and buttered or laid on foil in a hot oven with a few slices of gruyere. And finally, most important of all, the almond macaroons from Standard Baking Co.

The very day my husband Keith and I arrived in Portland, we went to Standard. Keith is serious about bread, and his palate is trained to discern even the slightest variations in taste, texture, yeast, flour and salt. When he told me that Standard’s was the best baguette he’d tasted outside of Paris, I was sold, and their bread has become, well, our standard.

When our young son recently reached solid-food age, it became a tradition to take him to Standard on Saturdays with his friend Hartley and Hartley’s wonderful mother, for a few bites of a croissant or a morning bun. Since moving to Portland, I’ve been at least a thrice-weekly customer at the bakery, and as I began to frequent it, I started noticing more than just the bread. Little bags of treats appeared in my peripheral vision – molasses spice cookies, rugelach that rivals William Greenberg’s in New York, and yes, the almond macaroons.

Almost every time I saw them I’d buy a bag, and this week was no different. They’re made from absolutely nothing superfluous – just almonds, egg whites, sugar, lemon juice and a touch of salt. They are airy, chewy, golden, perfectly sized, not-too-sweet morsels of pure goodness, with an almond flavor so deep it’s almost boozy. Then, as you swallow and bask in the afterglow, you realize the headiness is just the beautiful result of five simple ingredients mixing and mingling in a delicious back-and-forth – a few thrilling bites in a town with incredible taste.

Thank you, Portland, for feeding us so exquisitely. We miss you already. — Anna, Keith, Henry and Bess.

Anna Stoessinger lives (rather, lived) in Maine with her husband, Keith; her son, Henry; and their dog, Bess. She is a writer who works in advertising. She can be contacted at [email protected]

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