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Scaglione Brothers Bakery & Deli, a Place that Matters

scaglione bros bakery

The Scaglione Brothers Bakery & Deli was nominated to the Census of Places that Matter for being a cherished feature of the Morris Park neighborhood in the Bronx.  Since the 1950s, three generations of the Scaglione family have been making fresh bread and focaccia daily in their Morris Park Avenue location, making it a mainstay of this Italian-American neighborhood.

The Sicilian immigrant father of current owner, Joe Scaglione, Sr., opened the first Scaglione family bakery on East 113th Street and Second Avenue prior to World War II.  In 1944, the Scaglione family moved their bakery from East Harlem to White Plains Road in the Bronx, and they relocated again in 1950 to their current location.  In the post World War II era, the Morris Park neighborhood of the Bronx was growing as an Italian-American neighborhood, making it an ideal location for the bakery.  Many Italian-American families looking for affordable single family homes to buy left their neighborhoods in Manhattan and southern Bronx for Morris Park. The Italian-American presence is still strong in Morris Park, which has one of the highest Italian-American populations in New York City and which is known to rival the Bronx’s Arthur Avenue for being the borough’s quintessential Italian-American neighborhood.

scaglione family

Today, the Scaglione bakery is run by Joe Sr., with the help of his two sons, Joe Jr. and Dan. Fresh bread and focaccia are baked daily without the use of modern bread making machines and in the same oven installed in the bakery in 1953.

Although the business has expanded into making deli sandwiches, the focus of the business (and the sandwiches) is still the fresh-baked bread. In the late 1990s, Scaglione’s original 1950s sign impressed director Spike Lee, who decided to film his movie, Summer of Sam , on the bakery’s block.  Although the sign was removed as a part of a renovation in 2005, Scaglione’s traditional bread making continues to draw loyal costumers day after day.

Place Matters is joint project of MAS and City Lore.