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FROM ONE SMALL GROCERY STORE
TO TORONTO’S FAVORITE SANDWICH SPOT.

14 locations, all family owned and operated.

California Sandwiches was born in Toronto’s Little Italy. During the mid 1960’s, the Papa/Bertucci family purchased a local grocery store with the hope of supporting a growing family. They quickly discovered they had something special when customers were coming for lunch instead of groceries. As the popularity of their homemade sandwiches grew, they decided to jump on the opportunity. In 1967 the first California Sandwiches was born. From its inception as “La Rinacente”, the veal sandwich quickly became one of Toronto’s favorites.

Today, very little has changed. There are now 14 locations, all family owned and operated across Ontario and recently Montreal! Traditional methods of food preparation are still in practice. Only the finest in Italian tomatoes are ground for our sauce that is made fresh daily. Our kaiser buns are baked by an Italian bakery and delivered every morning. And our cheeses and produce are bought and prepared for use as needed. Quality food and attention to detail have kept this business strong and valued.

The Story Behind the name “California Sandwiches”

If California Sandwiches originated in Toronto’s little Italy… then how did it get its name?

The story is quite simple! Around the time the grocery store was being converted into our new restaurant, the Papa/Bertucci girls went on vacation, and they came back extremely tanned! The customers all began calling them the “California Girls”.

To our family California represented success and fame and the name caught on so quickly !