Vignette > La Ginestra

In 1964, Sal and Maria Aversa opened La Ginestra, an Italian family restaurant on Throckmorton. They had emigrated from Sorrento, Italy, living in Sausalito since 1956. Sal and Maria did everything in the restaurant.   Sal cooked while Maria waited on customers, cleaned and managed the restaurant during all opening hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.  In 1965 Sal and Maria took their 3 children back to Italy for a vacation.  They had been in the US for over 10 years without going back there.  Their plan was that the family would stay for a couple of weeks, then Sal would return to Mill Valley to determine if the restaurant might continue to thrive.  If so, Maria and the children would return to Mill Valley.  If not, Sal would close the restaurant and return to Sorrento.  Back in Mill Valley, Sal found the sidewalk in front of the restaurant lined with flowers and little signs reading “welcome home, we’ve missed you, open up soon”. His family returned and La Ginestra opened.  In 1983, Sal died at the age of 56.  Maria and the children, Tino, Fabio and Lucia, kept the restaurant going. Today, La Ginestra is still family owned and operated by the Aversa family.