It all started when…
“We’re passionate about pizza, we care about people and our community!”
- Brian Coli, Founder and CEO, Georgio’s Chicago Pizzeria & Pub
Georgio’s Chicago Pizzeria & Pub was founded in 2002 and opened its first restaurant in Crystal Lake, Illinois. The business was new but the Deep Dish Pizza recipe was more than half a century old. Georgio’s founder, Brian Coli, was lucky enough to learn how to make authentic Chicago-style pizza from his dad, who learned from the legendary Alice Mae Redmond and Ruth Hadley, who created the first ever Chicago-style pizza back in 1943!
Mae and Ruth worked at Pizzeria Uno and Gino’s East for a total of 46 years. They decided to hang up their aprons in 1989 – at the same time Brian's father, Michael Coli, was opening his first pizzeria, Old World Pizza, in Elmwood Park. Mae and Ruth were gracious enough work at Old World, while sharing their secret pizza recipe.
Michael first introduced his sons (Michael, Brian, & James) to thin crust pizza by bringing them to a friend’s pizza place, where they were able to make their own pizzas, and later introduced them to Mae and Ruth who taught them how to make deep dish pizza! Brian recalls learning how to make a perfect deep dish pizza at the age of 10 from the legendary Alice Mae Redmond! “She showed me how, step by step, explaining with passion why each step was important.” Brian caught her passion, a passion he shares with others through Georgio’s to this day.
“It starts with an authentic Chicago-style deep dish pizza dough recipe (made with water treated to match water from the City of Chicago), hand-pressed into a well-seasoned pizza pan, thick slices of mozzarella cheese layered right on top of the dough, topped with fresh ingredients and a sweet tomato sauce, and always enjoyed with a fork and knife!”
Georgio’s has served over a million pizzas, has received numerous awards, and gives back to the community through donations, fundraisers, and sponsorships, continuing the tradition of deep dish pizza perfection started by two humble and selfless sisters in 1943.