Balzer Market opened on Larchmont Boulevard around 1926 and quickly became one of the most successful businesses on the street. The gourmet market occupied two store spaces on the Boulevard – 133 and 135
North Larchmont (today home to Heavenly Couture and Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf).
According to the LA Times, famous regulars included Cecil B. DeMille and Alfred Hitchcock. The Larchmont
Chronicle took a look back at early Larchmont in a 2003 article and here’s what they have to say about Balzer’s Market:
Balzer’s purveyed quality groceries to the “carriage trade” of Windsor Square and Hancock Park. Business was primarily conducted by charge and delivery. Customers bought in quantity to stock the pantries in the large homes. Canned goods were sold by the case; sugar and flour in 100- and 200-pound sacks. The store sold a ton of cheddar each month. In 1957, Jurgensen’s purchased the Balzer store.
Albert Balzer’s son, Robert Lawrence Balzer became America’s first wine writer. He got his start on Larchmont Boulevard stocking the shelves at his father’s grocery and taking on the role of buying wine for the store in post-prohibition 1936. Robert Lawrence Balzer wrote a wine column for the LA Times for three decades and was a major influence on the California wine industry.
Would you support a store like Balzer’s on today’s Larchmont Boulevard?
Thanks to LarchmontBuzz.com reader Erik Crezpo for sharing the photo!
Larchmont Chronicle: Looking Back at Larchmont
Wine Spectator: Robert Lawrence Balzer 1912-2011