March 05, 2009|By Rob Kasper

Maggitti's Italian Market & Gourmet Bakery

2419 Baldwin Mill Road, Fallston, 410-557-7080. Open 10 a.m-8 p.m. Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday-Saturday.

Maggitti's Italian Market has more barns than bocce courts in its vicinity, yet the fare here is genuine Italian.

Set up as a combination grocery and deli, this Harford County crossroads spot has a country-store feel to it. The country we are talking about is Italy.

I rode out to Maggitti's for lunch one sunny afternoon, counting cows and marveling at the winter landscape. The menu offered pizzas and salads, but I had my eye on the Italian sandwiches. The Old World Italian ($8.95 for a sub on a hard roll, $5.95 as a smaller sandwich on a kaiser roll) was filled with slices of soppressata salami, capicolla and prosciutto hams plus tangy fontinella cheese. When the smaller sandwich was paired with a cup of tangy tomato-basil bisque, I got an $8 soup-and-sandwich lunch that was brimming with flavor.

In retrospect, I wish I had ordered the sub. It had even larger portions of the meats and was served on crusty Italian bread, baked on the premises by pastry chef Margaret McIntire. Loaves of the bread are sold at the market.

McIntire also made the sfogliatelle, a gorgeous, multilayered pastry ($3.25) filled with orange-flavored ricotta. It was a delicate dessert.

Andrew Maggitti, the proprietor, is a certified executive chef and has worked at several upscale area restaurants, including the Brass Elephant. His professional touch was apparent in the selection of prepared foods that sat in refrigerated cases. I sprang for a large serving of baked ziti, $8, an artful mix of pasta and four types of cheese: Romano, ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan.

Back in my city kitchen that night, I warmed up the ziti for supper. It had been an all-Italian day: a dried-meat sandwich for lunch, ziti for dinner. A scenic ride along country roads had delivered meals with old-world flavors.


Best bite: Sfogliatelle multilayered pastry, $3.25

Best bargain: Old World Italian sandwich and cup of tomato-basil bisque, $8

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