We’re excited by food in this town. This year, we’re celebrating it in a new way. Broadsheet Sydney Food takes you inside the city's remarkable bakeries, delis, markets, butchers, bottle shops and much more to create the essential guide to incredible produce. Full of inside knowledge and tips, we've crossed town to cover everything from household names to hidden gems.
Over 140 beautifully-designed pages, the book shows you exactly where to find Melbourne's best, while sharing the ingredients, people and places that make eating and cooking such a joy.
Striking photographs evoke the vital part that food plays in our culture, and Simon Johnson and The Apollo's Jonathan Barthelmess guide chapters on stocking your pantry and planning a dinner party. We’re truly excited to launch a new book for anyone who loves making the most of what Sydney has to offer.
To celebrate the launch of Broadsheet Sydney Food, we talk to three business owners who have played the long game. These three have chosen consistently to focus on quality over quantity, a decision that has seen their businesses not just survive, but thrive, for decades (one, for more than 80 years).
Damian Galluzzo is a fifth-generation son of Calabrian-born Salvatore Galluzo, who opened the grocer Galluzzo F J & Sons on the corner of Glebe Point Road and St Johns Road in 1934. The small shop has enjoyed an almost cult-like status for many years, even more so now they’ve expanded into a new deli next door. Locals flock in not only for exceptional fruit and vegetables but service that’s increasingly hard to find. “A lot of Sydney’s shops and grocers don’t have a manager present day to day anymore. At our business, either my brother [Jo Galluzzo] or myself are always here,” Damian says over the phone, standing behind the counter. Damian and Jo work the floor, offering customers tastes of their new-season apricots, apples or cherries as they shop. “We’re very honest with our customers about our produce,” he says. “If something’s not up to scratch or if it’s really exceptional, we’ll tell them. We’ve gained that trust.”
Even though the grocer offers free delivery to the local neighbourhood, it can be tough to combat the competition from online grocers. Damian admits that in the past two years alone Glebe has changed dramatically, especially since the opening of Tramsheds at Harold Park down the road. But, the Galluzzo brothers offer something a big faceless supermarket can’t – a familiar face that remembers your name. “This time of year – stone-fruit season – people’s faces are lighting up a bit more, it’s like happy fruit,” he says. “I’ve worked in this business for 27 years, I know nothing else, and I still get excited to see that in our customers.”
Ian Cook opened narrow little Five Way Cellars in a two-storey terrace in Paddington in the late ’80s and is one of the most well-respected and knowledgeable wine merchants in Sydney. Rather than moving straight into the online space, Cook operates his wide-reaching business mostly over the phone and on email, if not in the shop itself. “We’ve got old-school customers that want to talk to someone who knows what they’re talking about, rather than reading a third-party review and clicking on a button to buy their wine,” Cook says.
Cook and his team put time into sourcing drops that a customer may have tried somewhere obscure – at a restaurant or overseas – but can’t find them. “We chase down a lot of things for customers, which can be satisfying, but it’s very time consuming, sometimes they just have a photo of the label on their phone,” he says.
Cook also invests a lot of time into his staff. “What I want them to do is to sell the wines in the shop that they like the most. One employee, Todd [Slater], has been with us for 13 years. He now has customers coming in asking for him instead of me, which is fantastic, because I know the store is in safe hands.”
Marco Tomini Foresti is one of the two sons of Pino Tomini Foresti, who started Pino’s Dolce Vita Fine Foods in Kogarah in 1978. According to Marco, curing meats and preparing Italian ingredients “the old way, the way dad used to back home in Calabria” is one of the keys to the continued success of this magical delicatessen. It’s also the whole experience of the store, customers don’t usually come to Pino’s to rush in and out, they stop for a coffee, walk around, taste a few things and chat to Marco or his brother Fabiano about what’s new before doing their shopping.
“We take pride in every product we make or handle,” says Marco. “We treat it as if we’re going to feed our family with it.” At Pino’s, red salamis, prosciutto and sausages are strung about the store; it draws you in off the street. “The first thing dad taught me was that people buy with their eyes first. So if things look presentable and nice, they’ll try it,” says Marco. Pino is semi-retired now, but customers still come to the shop to see him when he’s in, and Marco and Fabiano now enjoy their own set of loyal locals, too. “Dad never wanted us to be in the business,” he says. “It’s not easy, with long hours and hard work – but it’s a great profession, you make people happy.”
For more of Sydney’s best butchers, bakeries, delicatessans, fishmongers, bottle shops and grocers, pre-order Broadsheet Sydney Food here.