1300 Bank St., Suite 140, (410) 522-6900, piedigrottabakery.com
Walk through the doors of Piedigrotta and the fragrances of the place—crusty bread; vanilla-scented, cream-filled pastries; sweet, basil-laced pesto—hit you before your eyes can even take in the cases of house-made pastas and baked goods. Located on the neighborhood’s fringes, Piedigrotta both is and isn’t traditional Little Italy. Its proprietors, the Iannaccones, hail from the Old Country, sure, but their bakery cafe feels more like an extension of their home, rather than a business. Six-inch-high subs, silky manicotti, sfogliatelle that shatter on your tongue, and voluptuous tiramisu are the currency here. It’s all informal and all the better for it.