Lanzi Family Story
When we were seven years old, we started helping out: mopping floors, peeling potatoes, washing dishes,” says Lou Lanzi. “My parents always said, ‘A little work will never hurt you.’
That simple approach has carried four generations of Lanzi’s to success in the restaurant business.
“Everything’s Homemade” including the family’s own salad dressing. “We’ve had it since 1957,” Chris Lanzi, executive chef, explains.
“My father had just opened up Lorenzo’s, and he wanted something unique to draw people in. My brother Lou first made up the dressing; my father tasted it and said, ‘Geez, it has potential.’ It’s kind of a creamy Italian, but we threw a few other things into it, and there’s really not another one like it.” Salad devotees can buy bottles of the special dressing, not only at our restaurants, but also at Chatterbox in Amsterdam – owned, naturally, by two Lanzi sisters.
The reward for such outstanding cuisine comes from the patrons. “I get tons of comments,” says Lou. “Just last Friday, we served people from New York City that have a camp near here. His job is entertaining clients in Manhattan, so he goes to all the best restaurants. He told us our food was as good, if not better, than any restaurant in Manhattan. That was quite a compliment.”
Creating all this success began with the ingredient that carries it to this day: hard work. “When our grandfather came over from Rome, he worked on the railroad and in the carpet mills,” Lou recounts. “He worked two jobs because he wanted to own his own business.” In about three years, he realized that dream by buying a small store. From that humble start, he eventually owned a Prohibition-era speakeasy and Amsterdam’s only banquet house complete with professional boxing in the back room.
Growing up in those circumstances was Lorenzo, who learned the trade at his father’s restaurants and shared his entrepreneurial spirit. “In the ’50s, Dad wanted to get out on his own,” Lou says, “so he broke away and opened his own restaurant” – the same Lorenzo’s that delighted Amsterdam patrons for years. True to his upbringing, Lorenzo set his own nine children to work in the new restaurant. The result? His five sons: Lou, Chris, Tony, Joe and Larry now operate Lanzi’s on the Lake, Sport Island Pub, Partner’s Pub, and Lakeside Tavern and marina – not to mention a flourishing off-premises catering business.
And then there’s the work of passing on the business to the next generation – a process that, according to Lou, is already beginning. “When my son was eight – he put the apron on, wrote the specials down, took water to the tables, and set up. He’s very serious about it. One day, ‘Dad, how old do you have to be in order to be a busboy?’ I said, ‘Thirteen.’ He said, ‘Darn it!”
The Lanzi legacy is continuing pleasing patrons. The 4th Generation is now continuing the Lanzi Family tradition with the 3rd Generation, opening up their newest restaurant: Lorenzo's Southside. Serving Neapolitan Pizza & Homemade Pasta focusing on using their old world family recipes along with a touch of modern influence. The Lanzi brothers are trained & certified through the APN (Associazione Pizzaioli Napoletani) from famed Pizzaiolo Roberto Caporuscio & Italian World Pizza Champion: Michele D'Amelio.
Neapolitan Pizza (APN Certified) & Homemade Pasta. Trattoria, Italian Craft Beer, Wine, Cocktails & Outdoor Seating.
Located on the Southside of Amsterdam, NY where the Lanzi Family began 100 years ago !
1 Port Jackson Square, Amsterdam, NY 12010
Lakeside Tavern & Marina
Waterfront Eatery & Craft Beer Destination on the Great Sacandaga Lake.
306 Woodshollow Road, Gloversville, NY 12078
Lanzi's On The Lake
A warm ambiance greets diners as they enter the primary dining area boasting high ceilings and natural wood with an outstanding vista of the Great Sacandaga Lake. Enjoy a meal or an event – in an intimate setting or a spectacular banquet facility. Relax indoors or outside and discover the splendor of Adirondack ambience. Serving Lunch and dinner seven days a week – year round. Featuring Italian family recipes, steaks and seafood. Celebrate a wedding or join us for a Lanzi’s Special Event!
1751 NY-30, Mayfield, NY 12117
Sport Island Pub
Casual Waterfront Dining Overlooking the Great Sacandaga Lake With A Beach & Courtesy Docks Available To Patrons!
108 Riverside Blvd, Northville, NY 12134
Your Hometown Pub and Restaurant located in the heart of Historic Johnstown, NY in foothills of the scenic Adirondack Mountains.
21 South Williams Street, Johnstown, NY 12095
Time In A Bottle
The Lanzi brothers have bottled a staple of their lakefront dining experience.
Every time a guest enjoys a meal at Lanzi’s on the Lake they are served with a salad and house dressing that the family has been making for more than 60 years.
The gourmet creamy Italian dressing is now available for purchase at every Lanzi location & now available at Price Chopper and Market 32 locations.
According to Chris Lanzi, the dressing is a family recipe developed by his father, Lawrence Lanzi. The first batch was made in a small blender in the basement, but as it grew in popularity the family decided to purchase equipment to start bottling it by hand.
“My brother Louie was making it one day and when he was mixing it he added too much of one thing and not enough of the other,” Lanzi said. “When my father tried it he said it was better than the original.”
The demand for the dressing became so great that the family couldn’t keep up with shipping orders, and decided to start having it professionally bottled. That’s when the family decided to try making it available in Price Chopper. If it does well, Lanzi said he’d like to bottle a balsamic version as well.
We brewed our own beer in collaboration with a local brewery in Saratoga Springs: Artisanal Brew Works !
As you know we are very passionate about craft beer & wanted to team up with a local brewery to come up with something special.
With exceptional guidance from the Artisanal Brew Works team, we created G.S.L. Juice ! A super crushable hazy & juicy New England IPA with Cryo Citra, Mosaic & Michigan Copper Hops coming in at 6% ABV.