Back in the day Rebecca and I lived across the street from Angela’s Pasta and Cheese shop on Chestnut Street in Manchester. Having an Italian cheese shop as your corner store is pretty fantastic. I checked into Angela’s for a take-out lunch on Saturdays for the better part of five years. The pasta salad bar, large cheese selection, homemade pastas and Italian cured salamis are hard to ignore when you are only thirty steps away.
Angela’s is worth the trip, no matter how far you have to go. It is tucked into a quiet but active residential neighborhood in Manchester’s North End. I still live in Manchester and make the trip over as much as I can for lunch breaks at work and Saturdays to get provisions for parties and dinners. My mother had given me an Angela’s gift card for my birthday (one of the best things she ever did for me) so I headed over to pick up a light dinner to bring home. It was the same old story as usual when I entered. I got the low down on my old neighborhood and one of the staff said they just saw my father a few minutes before I got in there. That happens every time I go to Angela’s. I have a routine in the shop. First stop is the deli counter to get a stick of spicy salami, sliced thin and while that’s happening I pick out a cheese. The selection of American, French and Italian cheese is broad and staff is always there to make recommendations. After the cheese case there are a number of options of freshly prepared meals, frozen pasta meals to go and the best pasta salad bar you or I have ever encountered. This trip I walked away with a soft French cheese, artisan crackers and a turkey buttermilk pasta salad that was loaded with cranberries, pumpkin seeds and tomatoes. All great.
Angela’s is a throwback shop that we all wish we had on every corner of our block. Manchester has plenty of restaurants to choose from and the scene gets better every day. Angela’s transcends the Manchester food scene at a different level. It has a long history of great service and delicious food. The store knows its customers and will take the time to talk about the food and make the perfect wine recommendation. I’m a fan of this shop and I hope everyone gets a chance to go.
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