The first half of our story begins in on the sunny hillside village of Castelforte, Provincia Latina, Italy, located between Rome and Naples. There, Great Nonno Verrico was a miller by trade and for his services he was often compensated with wheat and corn. With the flour that he received, his wife would bake breads daily and sell them at the local outdoor market, "Il Mercato." It was here, that many of our authentic Italian bread recipes were created.
The inspiration for many of our cookies, cakes and pastries came from Great Nonna Testa. She was known in her village for the "Baked Specialties" that she also sold at the local market "Il Mercato" and festivals - "Gil Festas." In 1929, Nonna Verrico Testa came to America and settled in Williamsport, PA to join Nonno Testa and their extended family. Here she baked and cooked at the local Italian club, "the Dante Club," for weddings and holidays.
In 1890, Great Nonno and Nonna Pasnello came to America from their village of Cervincia Provincia Avellino, Italy to join the great lumber camps in Central Pennsylvania. Here our Great Grandfather worked as a foreman and Great Nonna would cook and bake three meals a day for a crew of eighteen men. They eventually moved to Williamsport, PA. Here Nonna Pasnello-Daniele catered banquets, weddings, and cooked for the parish priests.
Today... this is the Daniele Family. Francis "Franco" Daniele and Giovanina "Joanna" Testa-Daniele together have shared their mothers' recipes with Central Pennsylvania for over 16 years. In 1984, they opened "Franco's Lounge"- after having already been established in the community they opened Joanna's Bakery & Specialties. Along with their four children, Alfredo, Maria, Francis and Roseanne they proudly own and operate both of these businesses.
Now, inspired by generations past, Francis Daniele has created Bella Nonnas (Beautiful Grandmothers), our mail order division. We now offer to you the same all natural ingredients our grandmothers used, and prepare all our products by hand, the "old-world" way. We are proud to offer our Baked Specialties to you. Please try any of our cookies, biscotti, cakes, breads, or specialty butters. We are sure that you'll come back for more.
~The Daniele Family