Venuto's Pizza aims to conquer SE PA / SNJ
The Venuto family, founders of Hollywood Tans and other franchises, are bringing thin crust pizza to South Jersey and Southeastern PA. The second store (of 40 planned to open soon, in advance of 100's after that ) opened this week in Washington Twp (08080). They use a ceramic brick conveyor oven capable of cooking a pie in 6 minutes, and a large variety of fresh ingredients for toppings. I tried a regular cheese pie (The Michelangelo) and a pepperoni pie (the Raphael). The crust was near cracker thin, and crunchy at the edges. It is the best I have tried since moving here almost 2 years ago from South Philadelphia; better than South Phila faves Celebre's and City Pizza. It was smilar to Tacconelli's crust, but without the garlic dusting the bottom of the pie.
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I guess those plans are in the toilet. There is about 5 locations, about 10 closed.
This franchise is about as dead as it's former owner.
Venutos opened around the corner from my house. Their pizza is very good. But, more often than not - they can't get it right. One time, I stopped to pick up my order and they had lost it and had to start from scratch. I didn't have time to wait. Another time, they called at about the time we were expecting a delivery and said they were having "dough issues" and couldn't make any pizza. Another time their credit card machine was down and they wouldn't just record my number to run later - so no pizza. The point of pizza is a quick, easy dinner on a busy night - but if they're unreliable it defeats the purpose. After 3 strikes, I went back to my original pizza shop.