The End of an Era: Dom DeMarco is No Longer the Sole Pizza Maker at Di Fara Pizza
At 80 years old, the pizza legend has cut back on his hours and lets his children carry on for him.
Actor Leonardo DiCaprio drops in for a visit with the legendary Dom DeMarco, his daughter, Margie DeMarco Mieles, and other staffers at Di Fara Pizza.
Signifying the end of an era for New York pizza, Dom DeMarco, the 80-year-old owner of the legendary Di Fara Pizza, won’t be going it alone in the kitchen anymore.
As Thrillist reports, DeMarco “has slowed down a lot” and has begun to let his children manage most of the pizzeria’s day-to-day operations, even though he continues to make pizzas when he’s there. “My dad is a very proud man,” Margaret Mieles, DeMarco’s daughter, told Thrillist. “He pushes himself to do the best, but he can’t produce as many pizzas in an hour as he could when he was younger and stronger.”
DeMarco, who worked seven days a week for decades and became one of New York’s most familiar pizza-industry faces, has always been known for working at his own pace. Customers may wait for up to three hours for one of his pizzas, but most wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now DeMarco has begun taking Mondays and Tuesdays off. When he’s there, he takes breaks and lets his sons carry on for him. “I feel OK about it,” DeMarco told Thrillist. “It’s still my recipe. People still come. I just don’t want to sit around and do nothing.”
DeMarco’s reduced role isn’t the only big change at Di Fara Pizza. The company started offering delivery via UberEATS back in the fall. However, the delivery option isn’t always available, especially when the restaurant is busy. Other possible changes being considered: tying in with Amazon’s new delivery platform and even hiring more pizza makers to boost production. But Di Fara still doesn’t have a website, and its Instagram page, which as drawn 1,739 followers, only has three posts.
The Thrillist article notes that DeMarco became the restaurant’s sole pizza maker by accident. “My father did an interview where someone asked if he made every pie, and he mistakenly said yes,” recalls his son, Dom DeMarco, Jr. “When he saw that statement printed in the article, he said, ‘I said I made every pie, so now I have to make every pie.’” And for his first 48 years in the business, he never took a single day off.