We are very pleased to announce that Ignazio’s will be opening their doors, and their pizza ovens, on Monday, November 11th, and we couldn’t be more excited for their signature thin-crust pies. CTbites had the pleasure of speaking with owner Louis Termini, who, as it turns out, has strong pizza ties to Connecticut, and big plans for the new Westport digs.
What should pizza-loving guests expect at Ignazio’s? The Westport spot may be slightly less scenic than that of DUMBO but will continue Ignazio’s tradition of thin-crust pies, or “signature round pies,'“ with specialty pizzas including Bacon, avocado, and tomato, white clam, Tex-Mex, and pineapple and ham. For those who prefer something a little “crustier,” they will also be serving up a slightly thicker crust square pizza, the “Siciliana.” In addition to the pizza menu, there are some pretty epic calzones with fillings such as spinach, escarole, and carrots, and ham. But it’s not JUST pizza. Ignazio’s also features a curated Italian menu with dishes including Estelle`s Meatballs, baked anchovies, chicory salad, wraps, and grinders. On tap, he says, “I’ve got New England, The Bronx, and Brooklyn,” with Down East Cider, and beer from Brooklyn and Breweries.
The journey that landed Lewis Termini in the pizza business is truly one worth telling. During our first meeting Termini gave me the full scoop. “My mother was a Cajun. Cajun people wake up cooking and they go to sleep cooking. My father was Italian, so my mother learned how to make Italian food from my Sicilian grandma.” Termini is a self-proclaimed” first-generation hippie, a starving artist…and I didn’t want to work”, but then there were kids. Out of necessity, he finally stepped into his father’s business at the legendary jazz club, The Five Spot Cafe (jaw still open over this detail). Years later, and now schooled in the industry, he took all of those Sicilian pizza skills he had learned from his grandma, saw an ad for “Pizza chef wanted in Avon CT,” and turned Connecticut’s Luna Pizza into a seven location success.
Termini says “While I was away from Brooklyn, it got cool. I tried Grimaldi’s Pizza and I thought it was good, but I knew I could do better. I walked around the corner to get in my car and go back to CT, and the landlords were putting a ‘Space Available’ sign in the window.” He took the sign out of the window, and the rest is history. Ignazio’s—named after his father—was born, and now he has brought his pizza dreams back to Connecticut.
But there’s more. Termini has big plans for the future of Ignazio’s. As you may recall from the history section of this article, he is an artist and a supporter of the arts. In fact, you can view some of the Termini’s paintings in the restrooms (Ask him to tell you the stories behind these). For the changing of the seasons, in spring, he has scheduled the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra to play outside the restaurant, as well as smaller grouping of orchestra musicians for the holidays, and on a weekly basis, diners will enjoy rotating duets from the same orchestra.
Why Westport, you might ask? That’s simple. On Termini’s first trip to Hartford County 30 years ago, he stopped in Westport and liked the town. He thought to himself, “I’d like to open up a pizza spot here someday.” And there you have it. Stop by and say “hi” to Lewis. You’ll be happy you did.
833 Post Rd E; Westport
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