L.A. Italian Kitchen founder, Joseph De Santis began his career in the restaurant-food service industry at the ripe age of nine years old. While growing up, Joe’s father would take him to work at one of the family’s pizza places, Pizza Pete’s, on the weekends. As a young man, Joe embraced the challenge and opportunity to work and learn about the restaurant business. By age sixteen, Joe was the manager of one of the larger sales volume Pizza Pete’s restaurants located in Santa Ana, California.
Joe’s grandparents, Joseph and Margaret De Santis, Italian immigrants, left New Jersey in the early 1950’s moving west to Los Angeles, California. There they started an Italian grocery market. As the family grew and more income was needed, they opened their pizza stand in Glendale. Pizza Pete’s opened in 1956, setting the course of direction for Joe and the De Santis family for many years to come.