Bay Ridge

Panera Bread opens new Bay Ridge location with free coffee

August 4, 2014 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The grand opening of Brooklyn’s third Panera Bread was marked with, of course, the breaking of bread! Patricia Salas, an aide to Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, Borough President Eric Adams, Linda Lupia, an aide to Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny, Greg George, VP of Doherty Enterprises, Carlo Scissura, president and CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, state Sen. Marty Golden and Councilman Vincent Gentile (left to right) get set to break the loaf of Italian bread
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Hey, when you open a famous bakery-café, you can’t have just a ribbon-cutting ceremony. You have to break bread, too!

That’s exactly what the owners of Brooklyn’s newest Panera Bread did as they welcomed customers for the first day of business at their new Bay Ridge location on Monday morning.

Borough President Eric Adams, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President Carlo Scissura, state Sen. Marty Golden (R-C-Bay Ridge-southwest Brooklyn), and Councilman Vincent Gentile (D-Bay Ridge-Dyker Heights-Bensonhurst) were on hand to welcome Panera Bread to the neighborhood. The franchise already has locations on Adams Street in Downtown Brooklyn and at the Kings Plaza Shopping Mall. The Bay Ridge eatery marks Panera Bread’s third location in Brooklyn.

The bakery-café, located at 531 86th St., opened for business at 6:30 a.m. The owners found a fast way into the hearts of caffeine-loving Bay Ridgeites. The bakery-café offered free cups of coffee to the first 250 customers who walked through the door on Monday. In fact, those customers will be able to enjoy free cups of Joe for a month!

“We’re excited to open our newest location in Bay Ridge,” said Greg George, vice president of operations for Doherty Enterprises, Inc., the Panera Bread franchisee for Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens and Long Island. “We’ve been busy staffing the café with enthusiastic associates and are confident that people in the area will enjoy the better-for-you food options coupled with the convenient new to-go ordering option,” he said.

Panera Bread has 1,673 bakery-cafes across the U.S. The bakery-café is famous for its handcrafted, fresh-baked artisan breads such as Asiago cheese, tomato basil, ciabatta and sesame semolina. It is also famous for its soup in a bread bowl.

Panera Bread appeared to be doing brisk business on opening day.

In fact, the bread-breaking and ribbon-cutting ceremony was moved outdoors, to the sidewalk in front of the eatery, so as to not interfere with customers patiently waiting on line for their cinnamon raisin swirl bread and whole grain bagels.

“I think the opening of Panera Bread here in Bay Ridge signals something very positive,” Scissura told the Brooklyn Eagle. “It tells other large chains that Bay Ridge will welcome them. You don’t have to be just in Downtown Brooklyn. Other neighborhoods can accommodate you, too. The mom-and-pop stores do well here, and so can the large chains.”

The Bay Ridge Panera Bread will serve breakfast from 6:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday through Friday and from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Lunch and dinner are available until 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday and until 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The bakery-café closes two hours earlier on Sunday.

The breakfast menu features egg sandwiches, soufflés, oatmeal and bagels. There are also smoothies.

For lunch, diners can choose from an assortment of sandwich selections, including lobster rolls, Sierra turkey, Chipotle chicken, classic grilled cheese, Mediterranean veggie, Asiago steak and other selections.

The soups include broccoli cheddar, bistro French onion, Lemon Chicken Orzo and creamy tomato.

There is a wide array of salads to satisfy the sophisticated palate, including Thai chicken, Fuji apple chicken and strawberry poppyseed chicken. The pasta dishes include chicken tortellini Alfredo, pesto Saccettini and chicken Sorrentina.

For more information, call Panera Bread’s Bay Ridge bakery-café at 718-238-0482.


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