Popular pizza shop moving out of Trenton

DeLorenzo's pizza shop

April 12, 2013 3:09:41 PM PDT
It's the end of an era for pizza lovers in Trenton, New Jersey.

This weekend the popular DeLorenzo's Pizza on Hamilton Avenue is closing its doors and moving to the suburbs.

On Friday, customers were crowding into the restaurant one last time. The shop, famous for its signature tomato pies, is moving to Hamilton Township.

"Everybody likes my pizza but they're afraid to come into the city," said owner Rick DeLorenzo. "They're afraid of being robbed or harassed."

"I hesitate to come out at night to eat dinner in the 'Burg," said Melanie Wagner of Hamilton.

DeLorenzo's is just the latest in a series of Trenton restaurants, particularly in the Chambersburg section, that have left town.

Owners of the once-thriving John Henry's Seafood restaurant said he pulled out when customers told him crime made them afraid to come to Trenton.

"Little by little volume came down to 20% of the volume that we were used to so, financially, we couldn't afford to stay there anymore," Henry said.

DeLorenzo's was opened back in 1961 and has been serving its popular tomato pie to generations including Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, who grew up in nearby Hamilton.

"Nobody else in the area makes it like this. So, if you get pie here then you go somewhere else, the other stuff seems like a big dough ball in your mouth," said Greg Young of Ewing.

"It's been with me since I was a kid walking over from St. Anthony's grammar school over to here on Wednesdays when we had a half day," said Barbara Samel of Robbinsville.

DeLorenzo said he'll move the ovens and some of the booths to the new location on Sloan Avenue, so it won't lose the feel people have grown to love.

"We can't not have pizza! We come here at least twice a week," said Connie English of Hamilton.

It will be at least two weeks until the new location opens up, and their tomato pie dynasty will live on... just not in Trenton.