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Greco's Pizza Presto a new way and new place to enjoy good eats

It just made a lot of sense because local businesses making local food and local drinks, they just jived,”

Now there are even more reasons to love Greco’s.

Taylor Trottier and his sister Stephanie have made the move to expand the family business to New Ontario Brewing Company on Seymour Street.   

“We’ve always talked about having another location in general,” said co-owner Taylor Trottier.

“We were kind of outgrowing the boundaries of our restaurant. The idea of having another location so that we could have a blank slate to work from, had been in the works for many years.”

And then it happened, Greco’s Pizza Presto became a reality.

“We opened this location in December of 2022, and we did a very soft open. We had a grand opening in May, it was really successful. The brewery now has food to accompany their beer which I think is good,” explained co-owner Stephanie.

“The name change is a take on Greco’s Pizza and Pasta. It’s ready-to-go food. So, we do pizzas out of here, they come in one size. We also offer lasagnas.”

Taylor sees it as a good fit.  

“They were looking for a kitchen to be installed to offer food. So, it just worked out what we needed, and they needed aligned. So, we put a proposal together, and they were happy with it. It just made a lot of sense because local businesses making local food and local drinks, they just jived,” stated Taylor.

“So, it grew out of that. We wanted to start something new, but using all the good things we have with a very long-standing restaurant. So, we took all of our ingredients, we took a lot of our main staples, the pizza, all of our same ingredients, the sauces, all the things that we prepare from scratch. We wanted to offer a little more casual food and limit the size of our menu which was always a bit of an issue at our Algonquin location. This was just the perfect opportunity to do that.”

The menu includes starters and apps, subs, pizzas, panzerotties, and desserts.

“It’s a little bit more of a bar menu take on Greco’s,” explained co-owner Gavin Ray.

“We do have some deep-fried options. We are trying new things out at this location.”

Options include chicken fingers, fries, poutine, and deep-fried panzerotti.

“We have jalapeno poppers made from scratch, which are fantastic,” added Stephanie.

They get to play around with the menu a little bit. One new tasty pizza is spicy bacon dill.

“And we make fresh dough knots. We use our signature pizza dough, twist them into knots, deep fry them, and toss them into garlic butter and parmesan, with our marinara sauce on the side. It’s absolutely amazing.”

Taylor went on to explain that “It’s little things like that, things that we would love to do at our restaurant but with space constraints, the size of our menu, and the fact we won’t ever have fryers there, this became the opportunity to try new things like that.”  

Greco’s Pizza and Pasta also offers a frozen food component to take home, to the cottage, or even to cook on the BBQ out at the ice hut when the time comes.

“It’s been relatively new for us. Basically, we were contacted by Lucky 13 to sell frozen products out of their convenience stores. So, we jumped at the opportunity to do that,” shared Ray.

“Because it’s new to us, we’ve had to buy some new equipment and figure out how we were going to make it happen, but so far, the demand has been amazing. It’s been hard to keep up.”  

Pizza kits are available to create medium-sized pizzas.

“We sell pizza kits out of our Algonquin location which are quite fun. People can take them home, and make their own pizza. They come with the dough, our homemade sauce, cheese and cornmeal because that’s our signature for our pizza. But at this location (Presto) we’re not selling the dough, this is more just a quick kitchen.”  

The pizza and pasta restaurant has served North Bay for nearly 60 years at its Algonquin Avenue location.

The restaurant is like a beacon for people looking for consistently good quality food.

The Greco family first opened a bakery back in 1913.

“And in 1969, the father, Cecil, turned the bakery into a pizza restaurant and from there he grew the business with his sons. They transformed it into the pizza place that it is now, and my father Terry Trottier, purchased the restaurant from them in the '70s,” stated Stephanie.

“My dad ran the restaurant with my mom for many years and then my brother Taylor purchased it from my dad. So, it stayed in the family.”

Co-owner Gavin Ray describes the food generations have come to love.

“I would say it’s homestyle cooking, feel-good food,” explained Ray.

“It’s as traditional as it’s always been, and we have tried to keep it relatively the same as the old recipes. So, a classic take on pizza and pastas.”

It is not uncommon for the owners to hear from customers who grew up with Greco’s, and subsequently moved away, that Greco’s is a must-stop when they come home to visit.  

“They stop at Greco’s restaurant and they always take a pizza on their way back out of town,” Ray shared.

There are other ways to take the taste of Greco’s food home.

“We also sell our pasta sauces, we sell our homemade salad dressings, so like our Caesar salad dressing is homemade, our Greek salad dressing is homemade, we sell those as well, just to give you a taste of Greco’s at home, or at the cottage,” said Stephanie.”

“We do a lot of half-cooked pizzas out of our Algonquin location. So, you can order your favourite pizza, have it partially cooked or half cooked, then you can either freeze it from there or take it home and finish it in the oven whenever you need it.”

“Steph, Taylor, and I have a goal of being successful and growing, so there’s always something on the horizon for us,” grinned Ray.

The co-owners are also proud to be nominated for a business award with winners to be announced October 17 at the Bell Evening of Excellence Business Awards together with the North Bay and District Chamber of Commerce.