FAIRVIEW, NJ — Valente Bakery and Trattoria Valente has suddenly closed shop after more than three decades, to the shock and surprise of area residents and those from beyond who came for its homemade mozzarella, semolina loaves and signature focaccia barese.
A bankruptcy notice was taped to the window just days after passersby told Daily Voice they had seen the place open.
Several pieces of equipment and a shop-full of goods remained.Joseph Valente, who owned and operated the 32-year-old business, couldn't immediately be reached for comment.
The move comes a half-year or so after a shop makeover that re-arranged the layout, creating more space both for items for sale and for customers to mill about in the middle of the store.
Among Valente's attractions was the focaccia barese -- essentially a 12-inch round loaf topped with plum tomatoes and olive oil -- that could be eaten hot or cold.
Several of those long-timers were caught off guard.
“My sister was getting her hair done the other day and saw it open,” a Fairview resident who identified herself only as Jenny said.
“We used to come here a lot. They made the bread out back,” she said, before walking around the store, reading the bankruptcy posting -- and taking a cellphone shot for posterity.
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