Gennaro’s was opened on June 7,1989 by Mr. Jerry “Gennaro” Feola. His mother, Nancy helped out in the front, his brothers Neil and Sal also joined Jerry, aka “The Boss” a few months later. The three brothers worked together at Gennaro’s for years with Sal Feola in the front, Aniello “Niel” Feola in the kitchen and Mr. Jerry “Gennaro” Feola creating the pizzas. In 1998, Sal left to open his own restaurant, and in 1999, Neil left to open up his own restaurant. This is when Mr. Marcelo Rafaniello came in and took over the kitchen under the guidance of Mr. Jerry “Gennaro” Feola. This was the beginning of a new era for Gennaro’s.
Soon to follow, Marcelo met Carmen Victoria “Vicky” Castro, which was Mr. Jerry’s niece while working at Gennaro’s. Vicky was one of the girls that worked in the front with Mr. Jerry’s daughter, Jenny Feola. Marcelo and Vicky fell in love and were married in 2003. Not too long after, Mr. Jerry sold the restaurant to Mr. Peter Vasquez and retired. Marcelo and Vicky left to open up a restaurant with Neil, Jerry’s brother in the Northeast side of St Petersburg.
In 2009, Peter sold the restaurant to Marcelo and then sold his restaurant in the Northeast. This is how Gennaro’s Italian family restaurant came into creation and being.
Now enough about the people and more about the food. All of our dishes are made in house from recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation with the freshest and highest quality of ingredients imaginable. From the Italian bread, to the entrees, to the salad dressings, to the specialty pizzas; all of our items are made to order and are never premade or frozen. If there is something that is not listed on the menu, please ask and we will do our best to accommodate your requests. Our customers are our family, and we will go above and beyond to meet your expectations.
I, Marcelo, the current owner of Gennaro’s, have enjoyed sharing with you a little bit of my history and my restaurant’s history with you. Myself and my wife Vicky want to thank you greatly for taking the time to learn more about Gennaro’s. We look forward to having you and your families join us for a truly familiar, authentic and historic Italian dining experience now and in the years to come.