Baked goods with the flair and flavors of Italy at Grelma Bakery & Café in Delray Beach

Grelma is tucked between a Walmart grocery and Planet Fitness on Federal Highway at Lindell Boulevard.

Tucked into a strip center on Federal Highway, family-run Grelma offers artisan Italian breads, mouthwatering pastries, and, of course, espresso.


Stepping into Grelma Bakery will transport you to Italy.

This tiny bakery café – it seats just 18 patrons – is truly a hidden gem.  Both a bakery and café, it’s the kind of pasticceria that could more easily be found on a street in any town in Italy than along Federal Highway in southern Delray Beach. It’s tucked into a shopping center storefront a few doors down from a Walmart Neighborhood Market opposite a Tesla dealership, just north of Lindell Boulevard.

Inside, counters almost the full length of the space are filled with a mouth-watering display of pastries, croissants, a variety of artisan breads, pizzettas and cakes – all baked on-site. The bright yellow walls are stenciled white and grey in an abstract design. A handful of tables line the wall opposite the displays of baked goods. Edison-style pendant lamps are suspended from the ceiling.

Massimiliano Langiu packs an order.

It’s a family operation; owners Massimiliano Langiu and Elena Barbieri, husband and wife, both bake and serve customers, sometimes assisted by their daughter Greta, 19, who because of her interest in tennis prompted the family’s move from Formigine, a town in Modena in northern Italy, to South Florida.

Grelma originally opened in September 2020 in Logger’s Run in West Boca Raton. A second store in Delray Beach opened last year. They decided to close their original store whenMassimiliano felt he was stretched too thin to operate both. Customers from the original site, nevertheless, have managed to find their way to Delray Beach, Langiu said.

The Grelma brand is a combination of the family’s names. GR for Greta, EL for Elena and MA for Massimiliano.

Recently, on a Sunday at mid-day, both Langiu and Barbieri were scurrying back and forth, taking care of the line of customers that stretched from the register at the rear to the front door.

They can serve up a freshly brewed cup of espresso with a pastry for a breakfast or snack, or a sandwich made on one of the house-baked breads for a larger meal. And there are takeaway items such as pizzettas ($6.50) and house-made lasagna ($17.90).

Besides espresso ($2.80) and other coffees, there’s Pellegrino bottled water ($2.50), a selection of Italian sodas, including the slightly bitter, spicy caramel-citrus soda known as Lourisi Chinotto Gazzosa ($4.50), and a selection of popular American soft drinks.

The sandwiches are simple, but tasty. They’re composed mostly of thinly sliced Italian deli meats, such as salami Milano, prosciutto di Parma and mortadella; Italian cheeses; eggplant; tomato; truffle oil; and balsamic vinegar.

Prosciutto sandwich.

Mozzarella sandwich.


A prosciutto, mozzarella, and caramelized onion sandwich ($11.20) arrived on toasted, crispy but fluffy, focaccia bread.  The bread, baked with a topping of salt and rosemary, was the real star.

A sandwich of mozzarella, tomato, extra virgin olive oil, and salt and pepper ($9.90) on the same focaccia consisted of slices of fresh mozzarella dressed with pesto and diced tomatoes rather than the usual basil leaves, extra virgin olive oil, and sliced tomatoes. Still, it was satisfying.

Over the course of several days, family members and I sampled some of Grelma’s baked offerings.

The crust was the best part of the pizzetta ($6.60), a 9-inch disk with a light topping of tomato sauce and cheese. The crust, light and springy, more than an inch high at the edge, but the cheese atop the pie was on the salty side

A cannoli ($4) the diameter of a dollar coin encased a thick, creamy filling tinged with anisette. We gobbled it up on the ride home. It was, perhaps, the best cannoli I’d ever eaten.

Croissants and pastries.

The chocolate croissant ($4.50) also was a real winner, especially for my chocoholic spouse, who said she’d just have a bit but went on to devour almost the entire pasty, almost half the size of a football, drizzled with chocolate syrup. “It’s really good,” she said. Alas, the inside chocolate filling was found in only half of the soft dough. Called a cornetto in Italy, it’s a bit different from its French cousin, which tends to be crisper.

A lemon bomboloni crema ($4.50), a soft and light, rolled-in-sugar Italian golden doughnut about 2 inches high with an airy lemony filling was irresistible and way too easy to consume.

The berry-topped treccia ($4.85), a kind of braided yeast-dough pastry, similarly was devour-worthy with its crispy dough topped with crema pasticciera and fresh blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries.

I was less enamored, however, of a blueberry-laden muffin ($4) with its weighty dough, that could have been sweeter.

A slice of mascarpone-berry cake ($4.50) also proved overly dense for my palate and was only lightly sweetened, though the filling was delicious.

Nevertheless, the three-layer chocolate cake ($5.50) was decadent and chocolatey if just a tad on the dry side.

Breads are a natural for an Italian bakery. It’s a sacred Italian food.

Artisan breads on display.

The breads at Grelma, however, may seem unfamiliar to those of us who think of the hard-crusted long batons topped with sesame seeds used to make hero sandwiches.

Almost all of Grelma’s breads are light and yeasty, though they are differentiated by both shape and ingredients.

There’s filone ($3.30), an airy loaf that originated in Calabria, made from flour, water, salt, olive oil, and yeast a crust similar to ciabatta.

Also, there’s a baguette ($3.30), a bit wider than its French cousin.

Sfilatino ($3), which some consider the Italian answer to the French baguette, has an elongated shape with a particular softness.

Another unique loaf is the Milk Bread ($2.50), also known as Pane al Latte, which substitute milk for some of the water in the dough. It’s a round, soft roll made by kneading flour, butter, and milk.

Whether your passion is savory or sweet, Grelma is a crave-worthy destination for  Italian baked goods.  But get there early in the day before the best stuff is gone.

Grelma Italian Bakery Cafe

3125 S Federal Hwy. Suite 12, Delray Beach FL 33483

(561) 450 7462


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