Welcome to a new mini-documentary series that we are launching to celebrate our industry colleagues — The People in our Neighbourhood — and it’s a big neighbourhood!
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At the time, I was a young server and in 1987 joined the opening team of Centro, which is coincidentally also celebrating 25 incredible years. Each day or so, it seemed that I would be sent down the street to Grano to pick up the bread for the evening service. It didn’t take long before I was hooked -the Martellas were the embodiment of hospitality and passion.
Since opening, Roberto and Lucia have created one of Toronto’s most beloved tables. They have raised their four beautiful children above the store and have embraced the community in ways that are so valuable yet intangible. Roberto Martella has an unselfish way of brokering introductions between different groups and interests. He brings together various people to discuss civic issues and challenges with the hope of discovering opportunities for making Toronto and southern Ontario a more inclusive, innovative and interesting place to live.
Winemakers, mainly Italian, are brought to Grano by their diligent agents to meet Roberto. They all become friends and together discuss the roles that their wines can occupy in the Toronto marketplace. Most importantly for we Ontario winemakers, Roberto pours our wines confidently, curiously and always as a proud ambassador.
On the wine menu, you will find an impressive list of Italian wines. Comè no? It is an Italian-esque trattoria!
Prominently, and without obligation, beside the Italian section is the category of VINI CANADESE where you will find dozens of local labels.
So, when thinking of a title for this segment, I am torn. We could easily call it A Celebration of 25 Years of Grano. I personally waiver between Piazza Martella and Vini Canadese. Ultimately, you decide.
Please enjoy this short profile of one of the most authentic hospitality families in our neighbourhood – The Martellas .
Auguri Roberto e Lucia per 25 anni a Piazza Martella.
Charles and all of us at Stratus