By Sylvia Stevens
It was Gaetano (Guy) Mazza’s dream to open a pizzeria in Harrison with his brother-in-law Dennis Latowski. When he passed away in February Dennis and his wife Jessica made sure to keep his dream alive by opening Gaetano’s Deli and Pizza on Thursday at 565 N. First Street, Harrison.
“My brother-in-law was from Sicily originally, he had three of these (restaurants) over in Toledo, and last Christmas he came up to me and told me that he would like to open one up here in Harrison,” Owner Dennis Latowski said. “So I said I would go in on it with him and help him do it but he passed away in February so in memory of him I opened one up anyway. “
Latowski use to work with his parents in the restaurant business back in the late 70’s and early 80’s, but ultimately went to work in construction. Latowski always had a passion for cooking so was excited at the chance to help Guy open a pizza shop in Harrison.
“My wife finally said ok, go ahead and do it because you are getting old and you can’t do the other stuff anymore, so you might as well do this to keep you busy,” Latowski said.
A picture of Guy will be hanging in the restaurant with details of his life and love of pizza for guests to admire. Mazza grew up in Sicily with his mother and father and then moved with them to Montreal and then to Michigan. Then he moved to Toledo and opened his own pizza shop which was so successful he ended up opening two more.
“All the recipes are Guy’s and his mom and dad from Sicily,” Latowski said. “We also have a stone oven instead of a conveyor oven. Guy preferred the stone oven, when he tried a conveyor oven he didn’t like it and went back to stone. It cooks better and gives a unique flavor to the pizza.”
The Gaetano’s motto is Fresh is our middle name, so everything will be made fresh in store. The restaurant will make traditional and specialty pizzas, calzones, subs and a variety of pasta dishes like spaghetti, meatballs, and chicken parmesan to just name a few. Pizzas can be piled high with 17 different toppings and if customers have trouble picking toppings they can always go for the salad bar or pizza buffet to sample all the different varieties.
“We make four different varieties of fresh made bread. You can look in our deli counter and see what you want and we can make you a sandwich out of it,” Latowski said. “It’s served with macaroni salad, potato salad or coleslaw with a pickle spear and chips.”
The Gateano’s Deli and Pizza will be open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. To place an order, call 989-368-1191 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.