My father, Tommaso Cavallaro, opened this shop in 1956 – just in time for the Melbourne Olympics. He would take the train to the MCG and sell pastries to the spectators. Today, my brother and I own the shop and we make the pastries together with other family members, carrying on a 130 year old family tradition.
What types of food does your store offer?
We serve traditional Sicilian desserts including almond biscuits, biscotti, and patisserie cream and ricotta cannolis. We also make special occasion cakes. During Easter we make Pascal lambs, a traditional Sicilian Easter treat made with cake and fruit mince in a marzipan lamb mould.
Your cannolis are quite famous. What’s the secret?
There’s no secret. Our cannolis are hand made with raw ingredients by my family. Every cannoli is the effort of four to five people.
What keeps your business in Footscray?
I’ve seen Footscray at its best and I’ve seen it at its worst. Now it’s changing for the better and I want to see it good again. All the changes make me excited about being here. After 2000 the economy was depressed and we struggled for a little while. But we decided to stay and it was the best move we ever made. Our sales went up. People began to look at Footscray differently. I feel like our parents are looking down on us and blessing us with good fortune.