On Wednesday afternoon, Bill Greenspan and his colleague, Robert Bernstein decided to get pizza for lunch.
After waiting for a "very long time," the two were able to walk to Umberto's and enjoy a slice. "We wish we could have done this sooner," Bernstein said.
Umberto's Restaurant and Pizzeria opened its doors Tuesday after more than a year of renovations. The eatery located at 208 Bedford Ave., is the former location of Tommy's Village Pizza.
John Ioannou, owner and general manager of Umberto's in Bellmore said he is enthralled that the restaurant is open. "I was looking at the dining room and I was like finally," he said.
On a recent afternoon, many customers came in and told Ioannou that they were glad that Umberto's finally opened its doors.
"This is just mind-blowing," Ioannou said.
Umberto's was established by Umberto Corteo who was born in Naples, a city in southern Italy. When Corteo settled in Long Island, he opened the first Umberto's in New Hyde Park in 1965. Since then, he has opened chains of his restaurant in Lake Grove, Garden City and Wantagh. This year the eatery was featured on the Food Network's, "The Best Thing I Ever Ate."
"It feels great that we have a fan base," Anthony Lopez, director of marketing said. "It feels great to service the community."
Customers were able to chose from an array pizzas, as well as pasta, salad and meat dishes. The restaurant is known for its sicilian pizza and its "grandma pizza," a thin-crust pizza topped with fresh mozzarella and plum mariana tomatoes.
Bernstein and Greenspan devoured sicilian slices. "It was really good," Bernstein said.
Ioannou said it took a while for the restaurant to open, but it was all worth it. "To see the smiles on the people's faces is just great," he said.