Supposedly a man named Gennaro Lombardi opened the first “said” pizzeria in New York City in 1905. An employee of his, Antonio Totonno Pero, began making pizza which sold for five cents. But since many people couldn’t afford the cost of a whole pie, they would say how much they could pay and were given a slice corresponding to the amount offered.
Hence, a slice was born. And nowhere is pizza more part of the city than in Philadelphia, home to one of the largest concentrations of Italian-Americans in the nation. They revel in their celebs, like singers Frankie Avalon, Jim Croce, jazz impresario Buddy Greco, actors Bradley Cooper and Sylvester Stallone and baseball Hall of Famer, Roy Campanella, to name a few paisans. And the Italian lexicon can be heard all over South Philly. Figurati (fuhgedaboudit), Goomba (buddy), Chooch (someone who never amounted to much). The ambience of the area is a show in itself — with the aliveness and aroma of Italian food at its best. And although we in the West might think more about eating a juicy piece of bison, pizza-lovers can still get their Italian fix! From veggie, to meat, to non- gluten local restaurants in every part of the valley “got it down.” So, forget about dieting or eating too much. Take the advice of baseball great Yogi Berra who once said, “You better cut the pizza in four pieces ‘cause I’m not hungry enough to eat six.” Mangiare! Mangiare!