Mondo's specialty is gourmet sandwiches and pastries that neither reach too far to achieve the newest, most eclectic fusion cuisine (witness Thai fajitas), nor fall into facile clichés (pesto and sundried tomatoes with brie on a French roll). Take, for instance, the date, pancetta, basil and brie sandwich on sourdough ($5.75), and you have not only a good balance of salt, with the pancetta and brie, balanced by the dates' sweetness, but you also have an interesting, Middle Eastern twist on the sandwich's mainly Mediterranean ingredients. The maple turkey sandwich with provolone, dijon mustard, mayonnaise and frisse on rye bread ($5.50) plays on subtle sweet and savory flavors. Its generous, half-inch thick portion of sweet, maple turkey was nicely complimented by the thinly sliced rye bread.
Both the rye and the sourdough breads were fresh and delectable in and of themselves, and neither sandwich was heavy on the condiments. On the contrary, I wished that the good folks at Mondo would have been a touch more generous with the brie and dates and a little less stingy with the Guilderns which, along with the mayo, had absorbed into the bread so that I scarcely tasted it. The sandwich selection also included tuna and chicken salad ($4.50 each), which were kept chilled, along with hummus, crudités and assorted beverages, including Orangina, Quibel iced tea, bottled waters and a wide array of Arden Garden's fresh juices, along with the prerequisite Coca Cola products.
For dessert, indulge yourself with a Lemon Love bar ($1.75) or a chocolate chocolate chunk cookie ($1.25). The cookie was a little less soft and chewy than I had hoped and, similarly, the chocolate-covered cherry pound cake ($4.50), though elegant and delicious, was a touch dry. Draped in rich, slightly bitter chocolate, the pound cake was spiked with fresh Bing cherries, which, again, might have been more plentiful.
Still, Mondo Bakery is an ideal place to meet someone for coffee, with Billie Holiday crooning softly in this subdued, yet swank atmosphere. The place is conducive to conversation, with a few tables by the frosted windows facing Atlanta's waterworks, a grouping of comfortable chairs and, with no laptop hookups, no pretext of trying to get work done.
Mondo Bakery, 1210 Howell Mill Road. 404-603-9995. Open Mon. 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Tues.-Thurs. 8 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri. 8 a.m.-10 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Average sandwich price is $5.50. Cash and credit cards accepted.
KILL IT!! Love you guys!
Sad to hear about Ben's Brown Bag. Hate to say it but it seems like…
Thanks. I guess there are some caul fat haters on this board. I like the…
not only is this a well written article, it makes me want to go out…
Breakfast with Santa, something great for the kids.