One of the more interesting effects of the financial crisis in Athens has been that a whole lot of bakeries have found fertile ground to open their flour-kneading business to the public, whose pockets are now concentrating on the basics of life. However, contrary to what one would expect from this development, many of these new bakeries have come to specialise in the higher range of prices and respective quality. La Bella Fornarina is where you can get the very best.
This is where my mother gets her daily bread from. She insists on always buying the gluten-free dinkel for her everyday needs: “It’s like medicine for your body!”, she tells me when I express my concerns on buying such expensive bread so often. But to be perfectly honest, I can see where she’s coming from; this is some of the best bread anyone can ever hope to get their hands on.
And it’s not just the bread, oh no: the sesame koulouria half-dunked in bitter chocolate and the cinnamon sticks, the cereal cookies, the cinnamon twists, the heavenly spinach pies and sandwiches (great selection for vegetarians too!)… They also carry traditional Greek pasta and related goods, as well as assortments of energy bars, cereal and the like.
This bakery might be far from the most affordable around but one thing’s for certain: you get your money’s worth and exceptional food. You’ll find it in the central square of Nea Smyrni right next to tram stop Agias Foteinis.