1987 - Opening of Pizzeria Vesuvio Clapham
Updated: Jan 22, 2020
Opening Pizzeria VesuviO in Clapham, Bedford
Our family business began with a delicatessen in Howbury Street, Bedford which supplied Bedfordshire with the real taste of Italy with products imported directly from Italy, regular fresh fish collected by Peppe on a weekly basis and fresh Italian Bread on a daily basis.
In 1987, we purchased 44-46 High Street, Clapham, where we remodelled Stapleton’s Bakery and Shop to become Pizzeria VesuviO on 25th Oct’87 – then a cosy 55 seat pizzeria serving authentic Pizza & Pasta based on the family’s Neopolitan heritage. At the same time, Peppe maintained the Italian Bread business at the rear of the property and supplied Bedfordshire Shops with our fresh Italian Bread. After several years, the bakery business was closed to make way for a function room at the rear of the property, then in 1994 we moved out of the premises above Pizzeria VesuviO to make way for the kitchen to move next door and therefore join the main restaurant with the Function Room.
Whilst this was an exciting time for us, the then sleepy village of Clapham still along the A6 at that time had a counsellor who was against the opening of a pizzeria and called for our new venture to be boycotted by the village in disapproval. His personal vendetta was overcome with great food and atmosphere with our pizzeria becoming a huge success amongst the local community and throughout Bedfordshire.
With time and continued success, Pizzeria Vesuvio extended to include a function room for an additional 80 guests when we closed the bakery, then with us moving out of the house next door and above, we had the opportunity to extend further and become one of Bedfordshire's largest restaurants.
By 2005, Pizzeria VesuviO had become a 200 seater restaurant known for excellent traditional Italian food, great family atmosphere and most of all, still family owned and run.
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