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Liuzzi’s Celebrating 40th Anniversary with Customer Appreciation Party on Sept. 18
For the past 40 years, the Liuzzi family has operated its business out of North Haven. What started as a small cheese production shop quickly morphed into a sandwich shop and has since grown to a full gourmet food market. On Saturday, Sept. 18, the Liuzzi family will host an anniversary party to celebrate 40 years in business and the support of their many customers over the years.
“Longevity like this is a big accomplishment and we’ve been very fortunate to have a very loyal customer base and great employees,” said Domenico Liuzzi, chief operating officer. “We’re part of the community. We have customers who were little kids when they started coming in and now they bring their kid in.”
Liuzzi Gourmet Food Market will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. before preparing for the festivities, which are from 6 to 9 p.m. There will be free food, live music, and local vendors. There will also be raffles with prizes donated by local businesses with proceeds benefiting the North Haven Rotary Club, which supports the local community in many ways.
“The whole key is to say thank you to everyone who has supported us and help the surrounding businesses get their names out there,” said Ryan Cosgrove, who has been the store manager for the past eight years. “Everyone is welcome and people are getting excited to get out and do something for the night. We have a lot of our customers who have been coming from the beginning who can’t wait to reminisce and say how much Liuzzi’s means to them.”
Domenico Liuzzi was just 12 years old when his father, Lino Liuzzi, and his uncle, Nicola Liuzzi, decided to follow in their family’s footsteps in opening a cheese shop. The brothers were born into five generations of cheesemakers in Italy.
“The secrets and ingredients have been handed down over generations,” said Domenico Liuzzi. “Their dream was to open a cheese place, but the store since morphed into what it is today.”
After Lino Liuzzi moved to America in 1962, he met his wife. By the 1970s, he was able to help his brothers follow him to America and in 1981, they opened Liuzzi’s. It began—and has continued to be—a family affair with Domenico Liuzzi’s mother and aunt cooking meatballs for sandwiches. That soon grew into a full-fledged deli and they began to add grocery items.
“We listened to what the customers wanted,” said Domenico Liuzzi. “Before you know it, it became a little grocery store.”
As the business grew, the popularity of Liuzzi’s cheeses began to spread. The cheese-making operation was moved to Hamden and Liuzzi’s now distributes to stores and restaurants in 32 states.
Though the Liuzzi family isn’t ready to reveal exact plans, Domenico Liuzzi said they have purchased the adjacent property and “future plans are in the works.” The family has been working closely with First Selectman Mike Freda.
“Because of the success of this business, we’re looking at future expansions opportunities,” said Freda. “This is a store that has such a trusted and quality brand image. The Liuzzi name is synonymous with a high level of quality of products and a high standard of customer service that has been consistent through the years.”
Many members of the Liuzzi family continue to be involved as Domenic Liuzzi is CEO, Domenico’s daughter Francesca Liuzzi is the office supervisor and marketing specialist, brother Raffaele Liuzzi is CEO and head cheesemaker, sister Roseann Liuzzi Guidone is chief financial officer, cousin Claudia DePascale is the book keeper and accountant.
The younger generation is also involved as Nadia Liuzzi, Ava Guidone, and Marissa Muro are office assistants and Tommy Guidone is a stock clerk. Seasonal helpers include Pasquale Liuzzi, Gianna Liuzzi, Marco Liuzzi, Markie Guidone, and Gianpaolo Liuzzi, who serves as Liuzzi’s mascot.
“All of my kids, nieces, nephews, and their friends have worked here over the years, too,” says Domenico. “You need your family and good people in order to be in a business like this.”
And though Lino Liuzzi is now retired, he still visits the shop every day. Cosgrove has been inspired by his commitment to the shop and his many accomplishments, noting that when Lino Liuzzi comes into the store and “sees everyone working, you can see the sense of pride and accomplishment in his face.” Domenico Liuzzi echoes the impact his father has had.
“My father landed in New York with $50 in his pocket and built this,” he says. “He is the heart and soul of everything.”
For information, visits www.liuzzismarket.com, like Liuzzi Gourmet Market on Facebook, or follow Liuzzi Cheese on Instagram.
Jenn McCulloch is the Correspondent for Zip06. Email Jenn at .