Italian Centre Shop Calgary 4.82

4.8 star(s) from 103 votes
9919 Fairmount Drive SE
Calgary, AB T2J 0S3
Canada
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About Italian Centre Shop Calgary

Italian Centre Shop Calgary Italian Centre Shop Calgary is one of the popular place listed under Bakery in Calgary , Specialty Grocery Store in Calgary , Food/grocery in Calgary , Deli in Calgary ,

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For Italians, delicious bountiful meals are a way of life and the dinner table is where we bond. It’s where families come together, friends are found, memories are made and business is done. Come, step into Europe. We are the ultimate pantry, deli, bakery, cafe, specialty grocery and slow made take home meals all under one roof.

The Italian Centre Shop, Willow Park, looks, smells and feels like an Italian street market. A place for family and friends to gather and take in a sensual feast of creamy espresso in the café, fresh bread wafting from the bakery, a European delicatessen, crispy fresh local and imported produce, and over twenty thousand specialty items and everyday pantry staples including Europe’s best known and hard-to-find gourmet items.

Each “department” looks like its own self contained space; each with its own character making up the streetscape as whole. Architect and designer Sid Assaf, from Office of the City Interviewed in Edmonton, describes the philosophy behind the design, “Our store is an exciting place to be. People will be reminded of an old village street from hundreds of years ago. Where vendors preparing and selling their wares is entertainment–a wonderful spectacle”.

There’s theatre the moment you walk in. The heart of the store is Western Canada’s largest European Deli, brimming with over six hundred different types of local & imported cheeses, meats and anti-pasti. Always busy, always something to sample on offer. The red, white and black palette used in the deli gains more elegance with contrasting white antiqued marbled walls, topped off with a hand-crafted metalwork trellis, from which the ornate emblematic signage hangs. Red pendant lights give the whole area a dramatic, theatrical atmosphere, lighting up the bustling prepped-food area below, where chefs handcraft slow-made, take-home meals to go.

The “Cathedral of Cheese” as Assaf calls it, is a guaranteed talking point. Over 13 ft high, 20 ft wide, the ‘wall’ of cheese is actually made up of refrigerated glass units, framed in Ontario birch, displaying over 80 wheels of cheeses like parmesan and piave vechio inside. All topped off with an ornate handcrafted wooden frieze resembling an opulent medieval building. There’s nothing like this in Canada.

By contrast, the bakery is humble. Framed in mismatching patches of barn door wood, all hand painted, with old style Italian factory doors and windows letting customers see the artisans at work behind. The metal work is all custom-made and hand-forged. Baskets of our freshly made famous pagnotta, ciabatta, red fife loaves, torpedo buns and baguettes line the walls.

Italian Centre Shop cafes are usually loud and boisterous. Like Italy. Our Head Barista from Milan demanded a La Marzoccho espresso machine because each outlet has its own boiler, ensuring high enough pressure to make the perfect Latte. Selling coffee, soups, sandwiches, cakes, pastries, Neopolitan style pizza from the oven, pasta and daily entrée specials. Décor wise, you could be in a cool spot in Milan. Trendy chairs, white tiles topped off with industrial metal counter tops and a floor made of old-world classic stone tiles and polished concrete, make this a chic, yet inexpensive place to hang out.

And not forgetting the Italian Centre Shop’s rich history, photos spanning the company’s rich heritage line the walls of the fresh produce area, reminding everyone this is a family business, which prides itself on creating love, community and belonging. From the 1959 black and white photo of founder Frank Spinelli’s first tiny Edmonton store, to owner Teresa Spinelli’s son sitting on a Parmesan wheel, to current Calgary store Manager Gino Marghella’s three generations of family. In many of the photos, the legendary ‘White Jacket’ prevails – the signature uniform hailing back to the old country, that founder Frank brought with him and all staff still wear today.

“We’ve paid so much attention to detail’, promises Assaf, “you’ll notice something new every time you come into the store”.

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