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Wednesday, Oct 4, 2023

Lines Forming at Porto’s Newest Cafe

Chain opens location in Northridge Fashion Center.

From talking with their customers, the Porto family learned where the newest location for its bakery and café would be – deep in the San Fernando Valley in Northridge.

Beatriz Porto, vice president and daughter of the founder of the baked goods chain, said that they knew they had hundreds of people coming to their Burbank store from Santa Clarita and the Valley.

“We knew we would have a huge clientele waiting for us here (in Northridge),” Porto said. 

Since opening on April 12, the Porto’s Bakery and Café has seen constant lines outside its new location at 19467 Nordhoff St. at the Northridge Fashion Center mall. The building used to be a Sears auto care center.

There were delays in getting the location open, however. Buying the building took two years, and then there was another 16 months to renovate it for use as a bakery and café, Porto said. 

There were issues with Covid-19, getting materials for the renovations and not having enough people to work on the site, she added. 

The Northridge locations joins five other Porto’s stores in Buena Park, Burbank, West Covina, Glendale and Downey.

In fact, as Burbank was the store where the customers from the Valley and Santa Clarita went to, it will get a break from the crowds, Porto said.

“Burbank is the smallest of all the stores. So, opening in Northridge is going to give them a big break” she added. “People who live in the neighborhood can have more leisurely time when going to the bakery instead of fighting for a table.” 

Whenever the company opens a new location, it adds new menu items to make the customers there feel special, Porto continued. 

For Northridge it is two items – a tart with Gazpacho mousse and strawberries on top and a croissant filled with blueberry crème cheese and topped with blueberries, she said.  

“If they sell well here, we will offer it at the other stores,” Porto said.

Nancy Hofmeister, chief executive of the North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce, said that the Porto’s name is one that everybody knows, and people will drive miles to get their food and desserts there. 

“The name speaks for itself,” Hofmeister said. “It is a valuable asset to the community. I think the lines that are still outside every day speaks volumes to how much everybody loves their food.”

Being located at the mall, where so many businesses closed due to Covid-19, is also a plus for the local economy, she added. 

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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