Original Home Run Inn restaurant in Little Village set to reopen after 70 years: PHOTOS
A few mementos were saved from the original decor, like the restaurant’s Tiffany lamps and the original cash register, and will be featured in the dining room of the new space.
Home Run Inn, the pizza company known for its frozen pies, opened its first restaurant in Chicago in 1947. Now, that historic location is set to reopen over 70 years later.
The new restaurant, opening Oct. 28 at 4254 W. 31st St. in Little Village, was built next door to the original building.
It will seat up to 225 people, with seating at bar stools and in booths.
A few mementos were saved from the original decor, like the Tiffany lamps and the cash register, and will be featured in the dining room.
“That original location is where our roots started ... so, for us, it’s our home, and it’s so important for us to take care of it,” says Gina Bolger, whose family started the business and still runs it.
Home Run Inn was founded by Nick Perrino and Mary Grittani, Italian immigrants who ran a tavern and served samples of their pizza as bar snacks, rather than, say, popcorn or pretzels.
Perrino’s son Joe later took over the company and helped expand Home Run Inn and turn it into a national frozen-pizza empire. The company now operates nine restaurants, and its pies are sold in over 40 states.
Joe Perino died last year at 64. But Home Run Inn is still family-owned. Bolger is vice president of branding. Her brother is chief operating officer, her sister runs internal employee engagement, and her cousins are chief executive officer and chairman of the company’s board.
Bolger, who has three children, says the plan is to keep the business in the family for generations to come.
After her father’s death last year, Bolger says keeping the business in the family “really means everything to us because it was my grandfather’s dream that my dad took over the company ... and that was kind of what my dad always instilled in all of us.”
Check out renderings of the new restaurant opening Oct. 28 at the original Home Run Inn site: