I was not looking forward to this bread. I could find no reason too, it has been met with lukewarm reviews. Oggi thinks that this is her least favorite bread of the challenge. SallyBR found the dough unpleasant to work with, and made it into croutons. Phyl gave it a meh, not a positive endorsement.
First thing, I cut the recipe in half. Then for the soaker, I used coarsely ground oats and whole oats in water. I think that buttermilk would have been a better choice for liquids. For the whole wheat poolish, I left it out on the counter overnight, thinking it might add a depth of flavor, or kill us, who knows. Just kidding, one of my new favorite breads, the Mediteranean Country Bread spends three days fermenting on the counter.
Then I followed the recipe. It is an average loaf of bread. It lacks a strong flavor, perhaps one could call it bland. I won't be making it again, but we will eat it for sandwiches.