Omnivore - The Panini Wars

Baroni vs. La Pietra Cucina

Image I lunched with friends recently at Baroni, the Italian cafe on Peachtree near Brookwood Station. I enjoyed it, as I have in the past, but my panino did remind me of the continual complaining I hear about the prices up the street at La Pietra Cucina.

I ordered the panino with prosciutto, mozzarella, arugula and roasted red peppers (right) at Baroni. Except for an overabundance of the red peppers, the sandwich was a nice version of a classic. It cost $8. At Pietra, the panini cost $9 or $10 and use superior ingredients in more generous quantities. Pasta dishes at Baroni range from $8 to $16. At Pietra, they are $12 to $15.

So, if you're in the mood for a great panino, go to La Pietra. But if you want pizza, you'll have to go to Baroni. If you want pasta, it's your call, depending on whether $3 makes a difference to you.