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Bellas Bakery snares customers with their version of Spanish rolls
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LATHROP - Since 1996, Bella’s Bakery has attracted folks from all over for pandesal or Spanish rolls.

Pandesal, in case you didn’t know, is a popular bread item of the Philippines. This yeast-raised sweet roll has the taste and texture as that of Puerto Rico’s pan de agua or Mexico’s bolillos.

But it’s the Spanish roll or sweet bread that’s perhaps the big attraction at the business located at 155 E. Lathrop Road. “People will come here early just to get them while they’re still hot,” said Annalyn Subia, who is one of the owners.

She and her siblings, Noli, Rocaford and Robert Vallesteros, operate the Lathrop bakery located just off Interstate 5. They have regular customers from the Bay Area and Sacramento.

“I think it helps that (Bella’s) is in the middle of both areas and just off the freeway,” said Subia on Friday.

Breads and pastries are cooked here daily prior to the bakery’s 5 a.m. opening.

Besides pandesal and Spanish rolls, Bella’s also features kababayan, ensemada, tasty bread, and raisin bread.

Kababayan is best described as a Filipino muffin while the ensemada is another pastry product from the region.

The tasty bread is known as “Pinoy Tasty” and the raisin bread is a cinnamon-type dessert.

Bella’s had to raise prices nearly a year ago to help cover the cost for flour, sugar, delivery and utilities.

Still, Bella’s continues its mission of providing customers with “the best and freshest baked Filipino bread around.”

The key here is coming in early.