NORTH MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – It’s the last check outs, the last day for Laurenzo’s Italian Market in North Miami Beach.

“I’ve been coming to Laurenzo’s for at least 20-25 years,” said Dr. Woody Swartz. “The best olives, the best Italian food and now what am I going to do?”

Many customers have been coming here for decades.  The store opened 69 years ago by Ben Laurenzo, now his family runs it, and has kept a very loyal clientele.

“I’ve been coming here for years and I’m going to miss it,” said Sara Lampert. “They had the best Charlotte Russe.  If you were from Brooklyn they had the best Charlotte Rusee and it brought back wonderful memories.”

David Laurenzo tells us the time just seemed right.

“It just became time,” he said. “We have family in Italy, friends around the country, we’re going to take a break. Travel, have some fun. Then we’ll see what we’re going to be involved in.”

Laurenzo’s Italian Market in North Miami Beach. (Source: CBS4)

Over the years locals and world famous customers have come in the door, the likes of Frank Sinatra and Joe Pesci.

David tells us the store supplied what others could not.

“10,000 homeruns a day you had to hit,” he said. “Fresh pasta, fresh backed good, meat, deli, seafood, wine.  It takes that commitment and that’s what we’ve done for 50 years.”

For those who are wondering what to do now that the door is locked for the last time, good news — the Laurenzo’s Farmers market next door is keeping its doors open, carrying customer favorites, the ones that meant so much to so many.

“It’s the love for grandparents and little kids and birthday cakes, whatever the food is. It all intertwines, Italian way. It’s bitter sweet like that,” David said.

The family is hoping to sell about 50 of the stores top products at the Farmer’s Market.  They’re also looking into selling some foods on line.

Ted Scouten

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