Antoinette Balzano, granddaughter of founder Antonio “Totonno” Pero, told Brooklyn Paper that the company is in the final stages of its transition, recently receiving new freezers at its Neptune Avenue store and training pizzaiolo’s in the art of making pizzas. frozen pizzas.
Balzano said they plan to launch in late September or early October, using Uber Eats to deliver pies to the New York metropolitan area and eventually other companies to deliver across the country, possibly opening frozen food aisles at supermarkets on the other side. America. She said this next step is the best way to cement her grandfather’s legacy in the hearts and minds of American consumers.
“We are training and getting ready to transition to deliveries across America,” Balzano said. “So we can take my grandfather’s name and legacy where it should be.”
Totonno’s has long been recognized as one of the best pizzerias in the Five Boroughs, and tomato sauce runs in the family. Totonno Pero was, according to Balzano’s account, the first pizzaiolo in the United States. In the early 1900s, the Neapolitan immigrant was baking bread in Gennaro Lombardi’s lower Manhattan supermarket when he suggested making a pizza pie, a decision that proved immensely popular.Joe Hall, Creative Commons
By 1905, Lombardi had been licensed to open the very first pizzeria in the United States, which still operates in the same Spring Street location; Pero made the cakes. Eventually, Pero migrated to Brooklyn to open his own store, Totonno’s, in 1924, which became one of Coney Island’s most beloved eateries over the intervening century.
The restaurant has faced a number of challenges in recent years: it was the site of a devastating fire in March 2009 that forced its closure for nearly a year. And like many businesses on the People’s Playground, it suffered massive damage during Hurricane Sandy, which also forced closure for several months.