Last summer, I went up to Malibu to visit Elliott Dolin at Dolin Malibu Estate and learn about his wines just after the Malibu Coast AVA had been approved (the article appeared in the Napa Valley Register).
It's now been a year and a lot has happened in Malibu. First, shortly after the AVA was approved, a vineyard ban took effect. While this does not affect anyone within the City of Malibu, it affects anyone outside of Malibu who wants to plant vineyards in a coastal area. Luckily Dolin Malibu Estate falls within the City of Malibu and is not directly affected by this ban. But, Elliott will continue to fight the ban as he supports his neighbors and friends.
Driving down Sepulveda Blvd towards LAX, it is easy to not really pay attention to the area around Jefferson Blvd. We are accustomed to seeing large chain business after chain business: from El Pollo Loco, Fed Ex, Big Lots, Pacific Stereo and Just Tires to Buffalo Wings and Pizza, Fast Signs, AAA Pawn and Jewelry and H&R Block. But tucked among all of these rather uninteresting stores is a hidden gem! While other local family businesses have given way to these chain businesses, for 50 years Sorrento Italian Market has been serving the local community with specialty food products and wine from Italy.
The store was opened in 1963 by Alberto Vera and his wife Ursula. Icons in the community, Alberto was the former mayor of Culver City and generations of families grew up going to the store. In 2010 and 2011 respectively, Alberto and Ursula passed away and son Albert Vera Jr. took over the family business.