Tony manages the business, assisted by his wife Gerardina and sister Rosa, who is Pasquale’s wife.
Tony’s clientele are mainly Australian, followed by – in descending order – migrants from Poland, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and Italy.
We asked Tony why there were fewer Italians visiting his shop.
“Here at St Mary’s there aren’t as many Italian families like in Liverpool, Cabramatta and Fairfield,” Tony said.
“I had to try really hard to please Australian customers.
“Things are going quite well and it seems that I’ve done it!”
“It’s true; many Australian customers are now buying Italian products,” Tony’s wife Gerardina interjected.
“They buy gelato, Italian biscotti and pasta, in particular spaghetti, which they adore.”
The Vallario family has not forgotten their Italian roots, and every Christmas “Mamma Carmela” prepares the Christmas tree.
Every Friday, Tony and Pasquale gather with friends for the traditional passatella, an ancient Roman drinking game.
The drink in question is usually beer, because wine is too strong.
When it comes to the store, Tony encourages Italians in the area to come and visit.
The shop is easy to find, located between Carpenter and Day Streets.
You’ll be greeted with a warm welcome.