Let’s Settle This: Which Famous Michigan Pizza Shop is Oldest?
Around the Mitten (and Rabbit), we've all heard of every pizza chain imaginable. Heck, many were started right here in Michigan like Little Caesars - 1959, Domino's Pizza - 1960, Hungry Howie's - 1973 and Jets started in 1978. Technically, Cottage Inn was a regular restaurant that served the first pizza in Ann Arbor in 1949 but did start in Michigan. (That location still serves burgers, pasta, salads, wraps, etc.)
What is the oldest pizzeria in Michigan?
It's impressive that most of the U.S. eats pizza originated in Michigan. There is no doubt in my mind, people will argue over the big name, local legend pizza shops. So, here's a brief timeline of the biggest names:
- 1949 Fricano's Pizza Tavern, Grand Haven, MI
- 1951 Falsetta's Casa Nova, Lansing, MI
- 1953 Russo's Pizza, West Michigan
- 1955 Luigi's Pizzeria, Flint, MI (Mario's opened in 1963)
- 1958 Bimbo's Pizza, now Vango's, Marquette, MI
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Those are just a few of the "legends" around the state. It's amazing that google says Fricano's is the oldest when you do a search... but... it's not.
True pizza fans know what's missing from the timeline above... Buddy's Pizza opened in 1946. Food Network has referred to it as one of the top five best pizzerias in the United States. Sure, diehards could say Cloverleaf or Loui's is technically Buddy's since they allegedly use the original family recipe, but no. Only one can be the oldest and it's the original Detroit-style pizza.