Felix (Phil) Valenti founded two Italian restaurants in Ontario. First there was Valenti’s Pizza Parlor, 208 1/2 W. Holt Blvd., in 1960. Next came Valenti’s Fine Foods, 1754 S. Euclid Ave., in 1964, which had “pizza, spaghetti, ravioli, fried chicken.” His family said he started by offering pizza for a nickel a slice and that Valenti’s Fine Foods was famed for its 79-cent all you can eat dinners.
When he started, there weren’t many places to get pizza, which was still something of a novelty; in Ontario, competitors were Luigi’s Pizza House, Frankie’s and Capri Restaurant.
Valenti retired from the restaurant business in 1979, meaning he served Italian food in Ontario for three decades, and almost four if you include the extra eight years he spent catering before he retired for good in 1987. Valenti, 87, died June 11, 2013, according to his obituary.
Do you remember any of these restaurants? These yellow pages ads, from 1960 and 1964, may jog your memory and are courtesy of the Ontario Library’s Model Colony History Room.