Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Mama Guzzardi was the youngest of five daughters, and the only one in her family born in the United States. Her sisters and parents were born and raised in Sicily and emigrated to the United States, through Ellis Island, in 1915 during World War I. The five Guzzardi sisters shared the cooking at home with their mother, Agata, while their father, Nickolas, operated a tailor shop and was involved in politics in New York City as a supporter of Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia. Mama became the primary cook at home, at around age 11, when her sisters got married. Cooking was a challenge for her as the food not only had to be prepared, but purchased almost daily from the butcher shop, produce vendor, bakery, fish purveyor and others. But Mama did it and did it well! As you can imagine Mama learned many ‘old school’ Italian and Sicilian dishes from her mother, sisters, and other relatives, and spent her younger years perfecting them. Her parents were very happy with her cooking. and she stayed at home cooking for them until she married at age 24. Mama’s first venture outside the home took her to Europe just after World War II, finally settling in Southern California where she raised her family while working as a secretary at General Motors. All along the way Mama continued to perfect her culinary skills never giving up the dream to own her own restaurant.
Finally, after retiring, Mama moved to Northeast Ohio (specifically, North Canton) to be near two of her sisters that had moved to North Canton, and the Inzetta family (which is part of the Guzzardi family by blood and marriage). Since cooking was Mama’s first love, she opened her own restaurant, Mama Guzzardi’s, on Main Street in North Canton, in 1986, when Mama herself was in her 70s. The restaurant continues in the hands of the Inzetta family (handpicked by Mama herself) to continue the tradition. Please come in and see all of the old true family photos on the wall, including Mama’s wedding pictures! Mama Guzzardi’s has been in the same location since it opened, now using the same recipes Mama brought to the restaurant when it first opened. Mama’s policy has been to make her restaurant a place where everyone feels comfortable and able to enjoy a meal in a pleasant surrounding. The waitstaff are excellent and will greet you with a smile. We feel our portions are very generous and we offer substitutions whenever possible. Produce is delivered daily and washed thoroughly. Our lettuce is crisp and our tomatoes firm. Our soups, salad dressings, and sauces are made in our restaurant daily. Almost every day, suppliers contact us to show us a quicker, easier and cheaper way to serve our meals. Not at Mama Guzzardi’s! We hope you can taste and see the time and effort we spend on our customers. Cooking is done the exact same way Mama has done it for over 75 years. Using Mama’s own recipes makes us unique. Strictly Italian! We are proud of our little restaurant in North Canton and believe we serve the finest Italian food around. We look forward to your continued patronage and your valued comments. Sincerely, The Inzetta/Guzzardi Family