While the repertoire of pastries at so many of Fall River’s Portuguese-accented bakeries is mostly sweet snacks and breads to take home, as well as fried malasadas, there is a whole other category of bakery in Fall River – the kind of place where you sit down and have a savory meal.
Marzilli’s is a prize example, its outdoor sign subtitled “Grinder – Pizza.” The menu here is similar to what you find in sleeves-up Mediterranean places throughout Southern New England, but with distinct southeastern Massachusetts flavor. Calzones are called chourico rolls, and they come filled with crumbled sausage; there are South Coast stuffies (stuffed quohog clams), kale soup, and Portuguese custard tarts.
Pizza is offered bakery-style, known as a tray, meaning that it is medium-thin, like focaccia, and generally bought by the individual piece, known as a square, and served cheeseless, at room temperature with toppings other than chourico a rarity. Grinders (the regional term for a submarine sandwich), are made on soft, fresh loaves that are delicious in and of themselves, but especially so when loaded with anything from meatballs to a chord of good Italian cold cuts. They come in three sizes; a large one, selling for about $10, is a good two feet long.