Town and state officials were on hand at Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana in Elmwood on Monday for the official ribbon cutting ceremony and grand opening.
It’s the seventh location for Pepe’s, a regional institution whose legacy began nearly 90 years ago in 1925, in the Wooster Square neighborhood of New Haven.
“The family is just honored to be here in West Hartford,” said Gary Bimonte, grandson of Frank Pepe. “We are very happy to be a part of the Elmwood [neighborhood].”
Indeed, the recurring theme throughout the morning - in addition to the amazing free pizza enjoyed by all - was that the new Pepe’s is a great addition to West Hartford, but an even bigger win for the Elmwood community.
“PIzza royalty has come to Elmwood,” said West Hartford Mayor Scott Slifka, who added that the addition of Pepe’s to the likes of other great pizza places puts West Hartford on par with New Haven. “It’s a huge development for Elmwood. [The neighborhood] has come a very long way. … Elmwood has longed for a regional attraction, and Elmwood should be proud that Pepe’s has chosen [the community].”
State Sen. Beth Bye echoed Slifka’s sentiments, noting that Pepe’s could be like The Cheesecake Factory in Blue Back Square - an anchor restaurant that attracts other businesses to the area.The 3,200-square-foot Pepe’s is located at 1148 New Britain Ave. and seats about 80 to 90 people.
For more information, visit www.pepespizza.com.