The Family Story Behind Atlantic Pizza House - Stamford Moms

Atlantic Pizza House has been home to Anthoula Pantzos since she was 10 years old. That’s when she began working there for her father. She says that growing up, Friday nights were spent in the restaurant with her parents… as was much of her free time.

Atlantic Pizza House opened its doors in 1960, across the street from the historic Post Office at 421 Atlantic Street. The original owner, Steve Katsetos (pictured with Anthoula to the left) had his nephew run the restaurant. At that time, Anthoula’s aunt was going to beauty school across the street and she would cross the street to get lunch. The two met, married and started a family. Eventually, Anthoula’s father bought the business and the restaurant moved to its current location at 221 Atlantic Street. “It’s a true landmark. It’s very difficult to open and keep a business running for so many years. A small local one at that,” says Anthoula. But she adds that the location is perfect, “I love the “mini” NY feeling when your walking down the street. It’s ALIVE!”

The sense of family that started the restaurant remains engrained in the day to day. “My husband, Chef Hercules does all the cooking with the staff and my mom and I are outside in the front of the “house,” explains Anthoula. “We are dedicated to the customer and no matter what, they are right! We make almost everything homemade, from scratch.”

The menu includes everything from pizza to Greek dishes. Anthoula explains, “There is something for everyone. The meat eater, the vegetarian, the pizza guy, the healthy eater. You name it, we have it. From pizza, to Greek dishes and yogurts. Our salads are made to order.” Something she adds makes her 13 and 15 year old daughters love eating there… especially the Penne Alla Vodka!

Wednesday, April 3 will be a big day for Atlantic Pizza House! To begin with, the eatery is getting a name change. It will become known as Atlantic Street House Pizza & Authentic Greek. “We thought it was time for a change. We saw their was a demand for Greek selections and healthier options. The food industry is changing quickly and we had to keep up so we went with it,” explains Anthoula.

In addition, it’s the day the restaurant’s renovation and new menu will make their debut! “I wanted to bring more Greek dishes to the menu. My husband was born and raised in Greece and he’s very excited for the new changes. The space has a beautiful, updated look with a Mediterranean feel to it. Nice lighting in the evening to enjoy a glass of wine with dinner,” says Anthoula.

So, April 3 will be a celebration at 221 Atlantic Street! And everyone is invited! From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. there will be free samples of Greek dips with pita, fresh salads, spinach pie (my personal favorite dish at the restaurant), raffles and free dessert coupons given out!

The eatery is a great place to eat in or take out for your whole family! There is a delivery team and the restaurant also partners with Uber Eats, Seamless, Grub Hub, Door Dash and Slice. If you choose to dine in, there are more than 50 seats, and parking can be validated for the Bell Street Garage. You can also park in the lot in back of St Johns.

The restaurant does have a kids menu that’s served with milk or a juice box. Since kids usually want a slice of pizza the staff will cut into tiny little squares to make it easy! This is something Anthoula says was inspired by her experience as a mom. “I wanted lots of choices and always wanted to make my own creations when I went out with my girls. I honestly didn’t order from kids menu because it was always just chicken fingers and a burger. I always ordered an entree with real food and had them split it.”

(Above: The family enjoys a healthy Mediterranean lunch on the island of Mykonos.)

Running a restaurant and having teenage daughters is something Anthoula says is certainly a juggling act but something she loves, “Being a mom completes me as a person. I recently became more active in the restaurant and sometimes feel sad to be away from my girls, it’s difficult but it’s manageable. Prioritize, plan ahead give lots of love and patience and they won’t forget that when your not there. Make it a point to be there for the important memories. I love being a mom!” she says.

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