NORRISTOWN, PA - After closing their pizza shop doors at 1803 Markley Street in Norristown in 2013, Via Veneto Pizza and Italian Ice owner, Domenic Stabile, vowed to his customers, "We'll be back!" Now, after six years in a shopping center off Rt. 202 in East Norriton, the longtime Montgomery County favorite will be opening a second location, again on Markley St., sometime next year.
For 46 years, Via Veneto Pizza and Italian Ice has been a staple in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
Domenic Stabile told PHL17, “I’m originally from Italy, Sicily, from a little town called Castellamarre del Golfo. I came to this country 1969.” Domenic, his brother Nat, and their cousin Vito, have been making pizza and water ice in Norristown since the early 1970s.
Domenic explained, “The name was already on the pizza shop when we bought it in 1973, so we kept it!”
Via Vittorio Veneto is the name of one of the most famous streets in Rome, Italy. Customers at Via Veneto told us how, “back in the day,” many of the Italian immigrants in Norristown, “knew what they were getting,” when they went into Via Veneto; which, for decades, has been the Stabile family cooking up quality food from the old country.
Co-owner of Via Veneto Pizza, Anthony Stabile, said, “It’s nice to see that they know you, know them, and everybody feels like they belong in the same place.”
While locals know them for their pizza, “Everybody knows them for their water ice.”
Via Veneto’s Italian Ice is now sold across the country.
Domenic said, “In 1976 we started making Italian ice. That’s the way we started with a small little machine.” They still use the original machine from 1976 to make and test new flavors at their production facility in an industrial park in East Norriton, PA. Owners say they regularly produce eight gallons of Italian ice a minute. They routinely fill upwards of 1,300 2.5 gallon buckets of water ice on a production day.
The Stabile family says they now wholesale their product to almost every state in the country.
In 2016, Hershey’s tapped Via Veneto to make their Juice Rush Cups, which are 100% frozen fruit. Domenic said, “It’s served to a lot of the schools in the country.”
These days the older guys run the Italian ice business in west Norriton, and the younger guys handle the pizza business at their 6-year old location in East Norriton.
Owners say, over the next year, they plan to build a brand new pizza shop at the same site they made pies and Italian ice since 1973 on Markley Street in Norristown.