Sometimes, we pass a shop on a regular basis and never know anything about its history or owners.
Tucked away in a quiet space on Richmond Street, Salumeria Italiana was opened because an Italian couple wanted to feed their baby son the foods they knew from their homeland.
In 1962, Erminio Martignetti and his wife, Vanda Maria, opened the North End shop. Having come to this country from Naples, they were happy to live to a place where there were a lot of Italian people. Hearing their native language made it easier to run a business.
“You don’t have to be a magician to have a good business,” said Erminio. “You just have to be honest and take good care of your customers.”
He certainly succeeded. The little shop has been in business for over four decades, selling olive oils, vinegars, pastas and other specialty products.
Culinary Consultant Alison Arnett said customers know that everything sold at Salumeria Italiana has been taste-tested by the staff and regular shoppers.
On any given day, you’ll see people from the neighborhood as well as tourists from all over the world shopping in the store.
“What makes this place special is the way it’s run, the products we sell and the good pricing,” said Erminio. “Now that I’m getting older, I want to concentrate on myself so I’ve hired a manager.”
Yet Erminio still lives above the shop in an apartment on Richmond Street and is inside the business on a regular basis.
“It feels like home to me,” he said. “I still love looking around at all the things we import from my original home – Italy.”
The shop is open Monday-Saturday from 8 a.m., to 7 p.m. and on Sundays during the summer.