True family-owned restaurants are becoming a rare commodity these days, but this famous Culver City steakhouse has been in the Petrelli family for eight decades and is now located on land where the business started.
Its immigrant founder, Joe Petrelli, was born in Bari, Italy in 1902. Joe came to this country and found a job in the property department of MGM Studios. In his 15 years at the studio, Joe saved enough money until he could open his restaurant in 1931. Joe Petrelli's Airport Cafe, across from the small Culver City Airport, significantly increased its business when Hughes Aircraft moved nearby.
Like his Uncle Joe, George Petrelli came from Bari, Italy at 18. George was trained in all aspects of the business by his uncle, but specialized in the meat department. He became the meat cutter for the steakhouse for over 50 years. George also loved to visit with all his customers, and the Petrelli Family hospitality is felt as soon as you enter the front door.
In 1958 Joe Petrelli was tragically killed in an automobile accident. George worked extremely hard and was determined to fulfill his uncle's dream. George proudly carried on the tradition of serving Petrelli's customers the best quality food, while maintaining reasonable family prices.
In 1995, the restaurant moved back to its original site to accommodate Redevelopment and is now called George Petrelli's Steakhouse. It is one of the few steakhouses remaining which serves beef that is dry-aged and custom-cut on the premises.
Sadly, George Petrelli passed away on May 30th, 2014 and he is dearly missed, but his family has vowed to carry out his legacy. His wife Sophie and daughter Marie, continue to welcome their customers and treat them not merely as patrons but as part of the family.
The family of George Petrelli is grateful for the many loyal customers and friends that have patronized the restaurant for the past 80-plus years. Petrelli's is truly the American Dream realized.
Above is a brief history and tradition of our restaurant as excerpted from the book “Culver City, California: The First Hundred Years”, by Julie Lugo Cerra. This fascinating coffee-table book may be purchased at George Petrelli Steakhouse. Continuing the family legacy, Marie Petrelli (3rd. generation) is including a commemorative George Petrelli Steakhouse dinner plate in memory of her Dad with each book purchase. (plate available while supplies last.)