The Boston Phoenix
August 10 - 17, 2000

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Giordani's Muffin Shoppe

Time to eat the muffins

by Dorie Clark

on the cheap
  • Jimmaize Café, August 3
  • Mr. Crêpe, July 27
  • Emma's, July 20
  • Anna's Taquería, July 13
  • The "Time to make the doughnuts" guy has got nothing on Valdir Giordani, who opened his first muffin joint a month ago in Somerville's Magoun Square and gets up at 4 a.m. daily to bake. He and his wife, Tania, are providing some grassroots competition to the Dunkin' behemoth, serving up Alice in Wonderland-gargantuan muffins for a buck apiece (or a dozen for $9.99). The bestsellers are the traditional blueberry and corn varieties, but there are 19 more to choose from; standouts include pistachio, colored a radioactive green, and banana-nut, moist and generously stuffed. Other unusual choices include "crazy cappuccino," raspberry-mocha, and four low-fat varieties.

    The décor is slightly sterile, but an exposed brick wall and high ceilings provide cozy, sophisticated touches. Most important, coffee is amazingly cheap ($1.35 for a large). If that leisurely breakfast runs into lunchtime, Giordani's also sells freshly made sandwiches. The egg-and-cheese, on a choice of bagel or croissant, runs $1.50, and you can add ham or bacon for a dollar more. And if you can't make it to Magoun Square by 2:30 p.m., locals have already learned a trick: Valdir works in the back of the store in the late afternoon, and if you knock hard enough, he just might sell you a muffin.

    Giordani's Muffin Shoppe, located at 516C Medford Street, in Somerville, is open Monday through Sunday from 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Call (617) 666-2171.

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