Maria and John
1967 Maria and John opened Johnny's Pizza in Moosup, Connecticut. The restaurant served 10" pizzas, grinders, and spaghetti with your choice of tomato sauce, meatballs, or sausage. Four tables graced its tiny interior. The jukebox competed with the constant hum of the huge exhaust fan above the oven and the coke machines' rattling delivery of soda cans.
Johnny was 2, Sandy was 11, I was 12. Growing up in Moosup was an incredible experience. We grew up in a safe, experiential world full of dogs, bikes, baseballs, footballs, fishing rods, fights, watermelon seed spitting, swimming the pond, exploring for frogs or anything that slithered, crawled, climbed, or stunk.
Our parents worked from 6:00 am to well past 10:00 every day. They were determined and uncompromising in their quest for the "The American Dream". America was their children's path to success, safety, education, and future.
The Plymouth Cordoba with "Rich Corinthian Leather" in Ricardo Montalbano's deep voice, was dad's ultimate excess. His only excess after years of constant work.
I graduated from Plainfield High School in 1973. I received my BA in fine arts from the University of Connecticut in 1977. The next few years were spent roaming throughout Europe and Greece. I was fascinated and exhilarated by the cultures, food, people and pace of life. I acclimated making friends quickly, enjoying their differing views, positions and passions.
Atlanta was my next adventure. I fell in love with the vitality and youthfulness of this sophisticated southern capital. A few months later proudly announced, "dad, Sandy, my brother, and I are going to open a restaurant in Marietta". He immediately handed the phone to our mother and proclaimed I had lost my mind. I hated working in the restaurant, his observation accurate.
I convinced Sandy to visit and together we started the search for a location. In 1979 we opened Christos Pizza on Terrell Mill Road. Maria, John and younger brother John Jr. moved to Marietta and were an integral part of the restaurants' success.
Kouzina Christos celebrates over 38 years of accumulated memories, celebrations, life experiences, friendships, customers, children, food, food, food.