As Southern Alberta's newest culinary destination becomes a fast favourite among Calgary’s families and food lovers, Gino Marghella, Manager of the Italian Centre Shop, invites everyone to the official opening festivities.

“We’ve been heartily welcomed by the Calgary community in such a short time, and it's always been our family tradition to give back,” says Gino. “Our shops are about great food and gathering places where neighbours become friends and our customers become family.”

Since opening the doors on July 2, the specialty grocery store is adored by lovers of pasta, pizza, pastries and paninos. A cultural gem in Edmonton since 1959, the Italian Centre Shop's Calgary location in Willow Park is packed daily with shoppers looking for Europe’s best-known, most-loved foods and everyday pantry staples, all under one roof.

Grand Opening activities include:
A FREE Mixed Mushroom Pack from Signature Mushrooms for first 300 people at 11 a.m.
Grape-stomping photo booth with Lucy & Ethel look-a-likes
Food demonstrations and sampling
Live Italian music and singers
Live watercolor artist
Activities for kids - face painting, glitter tattoos and bocce
New shoppers are encouraged to explore the shop with its more than 30,000 European provisions and “Cathedral of Cheese,” a two-story high, refrigerated display of 72 wheels.  Special day-of promotions by suppliers and farmers creates a bustling Italian-style, market atmosphere. Learn how to make authentic Baci an Italian chocolate kiss.
Demonstrations and sampling by purveyors and producers:
Messinger Meats of Mirror, AB
Signature Mushrooms of Ardrossan, AB
Small-batch butters and spreads from Swiss Butter House of St. Albert, AB
Dry sausages from Marini Foods
Fresh soft cheeses from Santa Lucia
Raclette from Switzerland Cheese Marketing
Starting September 12, shoppers receive an Italian Centre Shop passport encouraging all to try recommended products, for a chance to win dinner for 12 by a celebrity chef. The passport sets shoppers off on a treasure hunt for traditional everyday staples. Discover new pastas, sauces, cheeses and rarities like Greek fish roe Taramasalata, Hungarian smoked paprika and Portuguese quince jam to Polish tripe soup.

Saturday, September 12, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

9919 Fairmount Drive SE
Calgary, AB T2J 0S3
(403) 238-4869
Founded by Frank Spinelli in 1959, and now run by daughter Teresa, the Italian Centre Shop is a family of businesses. The group has three specialty grocery stores across Edmonton, Massimo’s Cucina Italiana, which makes slow-made, take-home meals and a wholesale distribution business importing from Italy, Europe and supplying more than 800 restaurants across Alberta.