Iuliano's Bakery Manchester, CT
Good morning C-hounds-
For the second time in about 2 weeks I've had the absolute joy of eating a cannoli from Iuliano's Bakery on Spruce Street in downtown Manchester.
This place has the best cannoli I've tried and beats the famous Mozzicatos bakery in Hartford by a landslide.
Let's start with the experience. First off I think Mozzicatos has gotten a bit full of themselves so their service isn't as nice as it is as Iuliano's. There's a nice lady at Iuliano's who is hanging out waiting for you to step into their time warp of a bakery and order something. I've never had anything other than cannolis from this place but I heard that the bread is off-the-hook good and the mysterious, prewrapped, unchilled grinders are calling out to me.
Ok, the cannolis--they're filled fresh when you order them (the nice lady disappears into the dark bakery behind the register for a while and comes back with a smile and your box of treats. The shell is delicate and it isn't like the kind of cannoli you get at a party or wedding where you have to kind of gnaw your way through it...it's flaky and light. The cheese filling is super creamy and flavorful...sweet but not too sweet. Sometimes they put nuts on the ends (not my thing) and other times they don't. I think it's a mood thing for the nice lady.
Anyway---it's on Spruce Street in Manchester and while I live in West Hartford, when I'm on a chow-prowl in Manchester, Iuliano's in always on my list. They're not open 7 days a week though--I think they're closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
Iuliano's is wonderful...couple of things to note....if you want their delicious homebaked bread before a holiday, you have to call in advance and preorder. It's the only way you will get it. Also, their hours tend to be short.....It's a family run business, and the owners are both elderly (but super nice).
Nothing mysterious about those grinders. They're awesome. Simply genoa, provolone, and roasted peppers. Wish I still worked on Main Street.
edit: Oh yeah, by pure random chance we stopped by Chimirri's yesterday. Everything looked really good, we got about 6 mini-cakes to go, and a few cookies. The pizza looked good too, but we were on our way to eat elsewhere.
We also stopped Chimirri's yesterday on our way to City Fish Market and Camella's. Both my wife and I were underwhelmed by white spinach pizza. I We also ordered the cannolis which were freshly filled, but the ricotta was too light for our tastes. I guess it is back to Franklin Avenue for us.
You were right about the grinders at Iulianos. One of my friends (who I turned onto this bakery a few weeks ago) surprised me with a cannoli and a mystery grinder on Friday. They are exactly as you described. To be honest, I don't think I've ever had a sammich without condiments on it but this grinder does stand on it's own with the salami, provolone and peppers (and I don't really love peppers, but these were really good, a little pickled perhaps and not spicy).
Sounds good--I don't get out that way often, but am mentally filing this place for another day.
If you ever get to Wethersfield, give Chimirri's a try. They're in the same plaza as Bed Bath & Beyone and TJ Maxx. They fill 'em to order, too--and believe the ask if you'd like nuts, cherries or chocolate chips on the end. ;)
Edit: Here's a link to the bakery:
I should also mention if you're in that area at lunch time, they make a Sicilian white pizza with spinach that I absolutely love. Haven't had it in a long time, but remember it fondly and have enjoyed it for years. I just don't tend to get out that way at lunch anymore.