Local Italian Restaurant Bella Panini Exceeds Expectations


Bella Panini‘s original sign has been hanging there for over 15 years. This eclectic restaurant serves fresh Italian food for local residents.

Cole Aggers, Ranger Review Reporter

The old classic red brick building, Christmas lights, and feel good music give local restaurant Bella Panini a classic home-style vibe. When you walk up  to the restaurant the first thing that catches your eye is the old-style sign. When you walk in there is an arch in the building. There is also beautiful stained glass window art. 

The simple Italian menu reminds me of going to my favorite Italian restaurant as a kid. There are paninis, classic italian pasta dishes, and fantastic Italian desserts. 

The service was fantastic, they were friendly and kind and seated us right away. Our waitress knew what she was talking about when we asked her questions about the menu. 

The first thing they serve you is hot, fresh, newly baked Italian bread. They also have a house vinaigrette special dipping sauce. The sauce is sweet and savory and bitter all at the same time. 

The caesar salad was good. It reminded me of a salad that my mom used to make. It was salty and cheesy. The greek salad was interesting with the kalamata olives and the artichoke hearts. It reminded me of classic Greek food, not Italian. 

The first main course that we ordered was the Chicken Saltimbocca. It was very good. It smelled and reminded me of classic Italian cuisine and the buttery white wine tomato flavor was very light and the prosciutto makes the chicken salty and flavorful. It’s a unique take on the traditional veal saltimbocca dish. The pasta was cooked well and the chicken was tender and juicy. 

The second dish that we got was a caprese panini. This sounded like an interesting dish to me because it was a panini but made out of the ingredients from the traditional caprese salad, tomato, basil, olive oil, mozzarella and salt. The presentation was well executed with the herbs on the outside of the bread creating a crust. 

The pizza we ordered was a classic cheese. The sauce was good and reminded me of my dad’s old pizza sauce. The crust was light and thin but also crispy. It overall was good, but it didn’t taste particularly special.  

The desserts at Bella Panini were very good though. They exceeded my expectations. First we had the classic pecan pie. It was light, sugary and sweet, with whole pecans filling most of the pie. It was delicious and reminded me of Christmas. Next we had the Chocolate Chocolate Caramel Cake. It was rich and flavorful, and the presentation was beautiful. Lastly to finish off the night, we had the spumoni ice cream. It was a perfect blend of the different flavors.

Overall my experience at Bella Panini was amazing because of the delicious food, good service and beautiful artwork and architecture. I would recommend Bella Panini to anyone who likes Italian food. Overall I would rate Bella Panini a 9 out of 10.