Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Leo's Bakery & Deli

(more photos) 

A recent suggestion from my grandmother and uncle (who both have a sweet tooth like I do ... perhaps it's hereditary?) led me to Leo’s Bakery & Deli for the first time. Although I’ll use it here for simplicity’s sake, the word "bakery" doesn't adequately describe Leo’s; the place is more like a combination of a bakery, deli, mini supermarket, and specialty food store. The deli counter has subs and panini, cold drinks, and prepared foods like wings, lasagne, and salads.

Near the counter is a section that features the key ingredients of an Italian dinner: pasta, olive oil, sauce, and others. A small freezer holds frozen foods ranging from clams casino to ravioli. Another area holds shelves full of desserts packaged to take home, such as cakes and pies, and even half-cakes (which I’ve never seen before--but what an excellent idea if you want to buy more than a slice but less than an entire cake). I saw at least one table of St. Patrick’s Day stuff, too. (This was before the holiday.) The opposite side of the bakery offered some more grocery basics, including honey and bread, as well as plastic containers full of Italian cookies by the pound and other pre-packaged goodies.

While exploring the bakery, I saved the best for last. My relatives had mentioned the very long bakery counter, and they weren't kidding. Wow. I walked back and forth a couple of times, finding it tough to decide on something, and then I realized that I would be happy with almost anything inside it. Leo’s makes cookies, bars, cannoli (I counted six kinds--SIX), cupcakes, Italian cookies (including my favorite striped ones, which apparently have multiple names), and so many more sweets.

Since I couldn't just stare at the sweets all day--I had to actually make a decision and order--I picked an Oreo brownie for myself ($1.25) and a piece of tiramisu ($2.49) to bring home for Clem. Even though the brownie was dense and fudgy (which is fine; I just prefer cake-like brownies), the rich chocolate taste and thick buttery frosting won me over. And the tiramisu was a hit with Clem.

TIP: Leo’s sells some local favorites, like Pittsford Dairy ice cream, and The Pierogie Guy’s pierogies (which we must try soon, starting with the “garlic smashed potato” flavor listed on the website…).

NEARBY: Another bakery, Etna Italian Pastry Shop (which I haven’t tried yet and have been planning to), and various other businesses at the Piano Works Mall. I wanted to check out A Second Thought, but I discovered they’re closed on Mondays.

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