Mmm..sourdough is one of my favorite breads, if not my favorite yeast bread. While I enjoy eating sourdough as bread for a sandwich, I really love using sourdough bread bowls for soup. I especially love getting a sourdough bread bowl filled with the vegetarian gumbo from Royal Street Veranda in the New Orleans section of Disneyland. Definitely my favorite way to eat sourdough.
Once, in class, we were discussing sourdough bread. I can't remember if this was a microbiology class or a food science class, but the tidbit that stuck with me is that West Coast sourdough tastes different than East Coast sourdough. (I haven't verified this yet, but will eagerly add this to my to-do list.) Apparently, this has something to do with the Boudin family figuring out that the sourdough starters in San Francisco had a unique flavor. In fact, the yeast that is used to make the sourdough that is popular on the West Coast is named after San Francisco.
Want to make your own sourdough? You can order some French sourdough starter or fresh sourdough starter from King Arthur flour. Or you can try making your own, but even that site recommends buying starter if you've never made starter before. You can buy San Francisco sourdough starter, but unless you live in San Francisco, your starter will lose it's SF-ness and take on different qualities of your local yeast.
NPR also talks about sourdough, providing a little history, a starter recipe, and recipes that incorporate sourdough- including a sourdough chocolate cake!