KOKOMO, Ind. -- A longtime Kokomo restaurant is getting some national recognition. PMQ Pizza Magazine inducted Martino’s Italian Villa into the Pizza Hall of Fame.
The restaurant, which is Kokomo’s oldest Italian restaurant, has been serving up hot slices and old world Italian flair for nearly 60 years. Frank and Angela Martino first opened Martino’s in 1962.
The Martino family says their secret to long success has been changing very little since the restaurant opened. Even 81-year-old co-founder Angela still works in the kitchen six days a week.
Customers say the family friendly environment and old world feel is what makes Martino’s one of the best.
“It’s just a wonderful place to come have lunch and see people,” Michael Maher said.
Owner Michael Martino says the Hall of Fame nod was unexpected but a much appreciated honor.
“You know you read the stories about other pizza restaurants and what they do and you’re just like man that’s super neat. You never expect it or even look for it; I just come in, great customers and do what I do,” he said.
Martino’s will now take their place amongst some iconic east coast eateries in the Hall of Fame. Michael Martino says their iconic status is due in no small part to their loyal customer base and “family first” approach.
“It’s a lifestyle, you get to know the customers, they become your friends, it’s not just a job. It’s the customers, the employees; we have a great staff that’s been with us. We come in everyday looking forward to work,” he said.