St Leonard-on-sea recently saw Lucia, David, Mario, and Tony Forte celebrating 50 years in business at Forte’s Pizzeria, 2 Eversfield Place.
To mark the occasion, family members held a surprise gathering for them at the Pizzeria and managed to entice them away from their customers long enough to recreate a photo of the siblings from 1966. (Pictured left to right as teenagers and now all in their 60s – Mario, Tony, Lucia & David)
The brother and sister quartet’s Italian Parents Augusto and Minchetta started their life in England, after emigrating from their family Village Monforte, with Forte’s Ice Cream Parlour on May 24th 1965 having taken over from Tony Minchella a close family friend also originating from Monforte.
Highly fashionable in the 60’s and 70’s Ice Cream Parlours were a popular feature of seaside towns and none were busier than those owned by Forte’s along the South East.
Many of the customers who crossed the threshold in St Leonards over the last five decades still keep in touch with their adopted Italian Family and have sent wishes to them, including via social media, when alerted to the milestone anniversary.
In 2005 the brother and sister team changed focus and reopened the business as Forte’s Pizzeria, with Pizzaiolo’s (Pizza Chefs) from the home of Pizza Naples.
The Pizzeria has large photos of Monforte on the wall and both Pasta and Pizza Monforte on the menu as a tribute to the families origins and it is widely acclaimed as a true Italian jewel, bringing a touch of our Italian authenticity to the Sussex seafront.