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From Historic Victorians to a Regional Microbrew, Old Town Tustin Merges Great Tastes

Written by Cindy Marie Jenkins on Wednesday, January 24th, 2018 at 3:06am.

When Nook Sales Experts match a buyer with their dream home, the only thing as important as architectural style is the neighborhood. That’s why we’re bringing you the #NookNeighborhoods series, where every Wednesday you’ll find cool history and culture to make sure you don’t overlook an area that could have the best nook for you.

You know you’re in America when the historic districts are around 200 years old, and you know you’re in California when you celebrate an old town built up just before the turn of the twentieth century. Perhaps that’s why we enjoy the quaint feel of Old Town Tustin, whose Main Street still inhabits the historic buildings from the town’s founding in the 1880s.

Tustin City was originally laid out by Nelson O. Stafford through the wild mustard and sycamore trees that covered the area he’d purchased from Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana. During the 1870s, Stafford did all he could to encourage Tustin’s growth, often competing with nearby Santa Ana. He sold lots, built a post office and school district in short order, and even offered free lots if the new owner promised to build a home on the land. When the Southern Pacific Railroad chose Santa Ana for its terminal instead of Tustin, however, that “sealed its fate” as a small town, according to historians. Although Stafford remained upset until his death in 1883, Tustin blossomed as a smaller destination and has embraced its history and destiny.

New construction and agriculture turned Tustin into an even more viable area, so that two telephone companies were built there at the turn of the century and the Interstate 101 soon was paved. They incorporated in 1927 when Tustin’s population hit 900 people. WWII brought three military bases nearby, and post-war industrial boom helped the population grow to 32,000 by 1970.

Besides the sweet shops and garden tours, Old Town Tustin also boasts a beautiful heritage of homes. Some of the more historic buildings include Victorian, early California Craftsman, Italianate, Greek revival and even Italian Romanesque. Modern boutiques and community centers thrive in these buildings of old.

Starting in 2013, The Tustin City Council passed a resolution to participate in “Red Shirt Friday,” a nation-wide initiative to honor the dedication of our armed forces by wearing red weekly. The town also hosts a great number of community events throughout the year, with a weekly Wednesday Farmers Market tradition as well. Annual events include an Easter Egg Hunt hosted by Parks and Recreation and summer concerts in the park. After taking a tour of the historic homes and gardens, you hardly have to explore before finding a great selection of dining choices: nearly any kind of food you could imagine! The Centro Winery and Microbrewery is a great nightcap. Opened specifically by the Pozzuoli Family to highlight their Archaic Brews, you’ll want to reserve a cozy spot at Centro’s in advance to enjoy the tastings from their vineyard, which include homemade olive oil and Italian food that makes your mouth water.

You can get a feel for the other architectural finds in Old Town Tustin by downloading our innovative Search With Style© app, or get in touch with a Nook Expert.  



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