One of Napa’s few remaining independent grocery stores, Vallerga’s Market, has been the anchor of the Redwood Plaza shopping center since 1962. And that’s just how they’d like to keep it, said spokeswoman Chris Vallerga Burns.

However, news that the market’s long-term lease ends in 2018 has some wondering about the store’s future.

Vallerga Burns acknowledged that employees were informed at a recent staff meeting about the end date of the lease.

“We’re doing fine,” she said, noting that 2018 is a long time from today. “We plan to continue to serve the people of Napa just as we have been doing for almost 69 years.”

At the same time, Vallerga Burns declined to elaborate on future business plans. “We don’t know what will happen” in 2018, she said.

Redwood Plaza property owner and landlord Richard Hoertkorn said he hopes Vallerga’s remains where it is.

“We are perfectly happy to renew” the lease, said Hoertkorn. “It just depends on them.”

Hoertkorn called Vallerga’s as a prized tenant with whom the center has had a 50-year relationship. “We’ve never had a problem. They are the best tenant we’ve ever had anywhere,” he said. “As far as we’re concerned, whatever they want to do, we do,” he said.

Vallerga Burns said the market, which employees 50 people, is known for its quality meats, gourmet offerings and artisan foods.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to provide our customers with high-quality merchandise and excellent customer service,” she said.

Located near Highway 29, Vallerga’s is one of only a few Napa grocery stores west of the highway.

The market is a hub for many shoppers in north Napa. However, in recent years, with the opening of Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Target selling groceries, the business has faced increased competition.

Vallerga’s was once a larger organization.

The business opened in 1947 with the Vallerga’s Drive-in Market on the northwest corner of First and Juarez streets. At one point, there were four Vallerga’s markets, including one in Vallejo. The Vallejo store closed some time ago. In 2005, Vallerga’s closed its Imola Avenue store. In 2007, the Silverado Trail Vallerga’s closed. It was replaced by a sister business, JV Wine and Spirits that closed in 2012.

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