Lexington’s Italian biscuit company expands


LEXINGTON, Ky. — A Lexington small business owner is chasing his dream after operating a vendor booth at Julietta Market for nearly a year.

What do you want to know

  • Lorenzo Busalacchi founded Tratti di Busalacchi in March 2021

  • Shortly after, in June 2021, Busalacchi opened a vendor stand at Julietta Market to sell his Italian cookies

  • In April 2022, Busalacchi expanded its Italian cookie business to Cafe Emporio by Busalacchi

  • Busalacchi will co-own the new extension with his sister-in-law, Cara Sederbaum

Lorenzo Busalacchi, owner of Tratti di Busalacchi, expands his business with the opening of Cafe Emporio by Busalacchi in April.

For nearly 100 years, Greyline Station in Lexington hosted historic transit buses and sit-ins during the struggle for racial equality. You will now find dozens of small businesses looking to make a name for themselves.

This is where Lorenzo Busalacchi got his start almost a year ago in June 2021, running his business Tratti di Busalacchi and selling Italian biscuits. Busalacchi didn’t let the pandemic intimidate him and expanded his business across the street.

Tratti di Busalacchi biscuits display inside a box. (Lorenzo Busalacchi)

Cafe Emporio by Busalacchi, located at 808 N Limestone St., will open later this month. It will serve as a general store and restaurant just across from the Busalacchi starting point.

“You can’t really describe it other than your dreams coming true,” Busalacchi said.

It’s a dream that started while making cookies with her Italian grandmother during her childhood. Busalacchi worked as a union electrician in San Diego for nine years before moving with his family to Lexington for the same job.

The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed Busalacchi to rethink his goals and follow the passions he’s always dreamed of.

“So I decided to pull out the old cookbook and give it a try and they turned out good, so I just ran with it and here I am now,” Busalacchi said.

The expansion includes grocery items imported directly from Italy. It’s something that Busalacchi is proud to boast about.

Imported Italian seasonings display on a shelf inside Busalacchi's Cafe Emporio.  (Spectrum News 1/Diamond Palmer)

Imported Italian seasonings display on a shelf inside Busalacchi’s Cafe Emporio. (Spectrum News 1/Diamond Palmer)

The expansion required more hands on deck, so Busalacchi looked no further than his sister-in-law Cara Sederbaum. The two co-owners of the new extension together.

“It’s kind of like I would rather reach out to the family first and they were close and see how they felt and she was on board right away and it was pretty easy,” Busalacchi said.

Sederbaum moved from Richmond, Virginia with his wife to become part owner of Cafe Emporio by Busalacchi. The ten-year-old former teacher listened to a call and a dream she had always wanted to be part of.

She said Lexington is inviting and definitely a place to call home.

“It was – you think it would be one of those phone calls that you have to be prepared for, but it was a phone call that we already had,” Sederbaum said.

Busalacchi is a wonderful husband and father of two children, and said this expansion is the result of a lot of hard work. He looks forward to one day passing on what he worked so hard for to the next generation of his family.

“You work hard, you have to put in the work for it to show and it’s just wonderful,” Busalacchi said.

Café Emporio by Busalacchi will open its doors on April 15. Then it will be open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.


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