ECHO PARK — The cheese on the pizzas bubbled as Otilia Schweitzer opened the doors of the massive oven to check on the readiness of the pies. Next to her a cook drizzled spirals of red sauce on discs of dough while another tended to pots filled with more sauces bubbling on top of the stove. In the dining room, customers filled the tables in the late afternoon only a few hours before Pizza Buona would close the doors tonight after more than half a century of business in Echo Park.
Schweitzer and her family are looking for a new location to reopen their restaurant and continue serving up its sausage pizza, breadsticks, meatball sandwiches and other American-Italian fare. But after today, the Pizza Buona, which has anchored the southwest corner of Sunset Boulevard and Alvarado Street for decades will be closed for good after the landlord raised the rents substantially.
Schweitzer, surrounded by employees and family members in the middle of the kitchen, could not say how many pizzas would be served today. She was too busy sliding cheesy pies in and out of the oven and checking on in coming orders.
The family asks that customers check the Pizza Buona website for updates about a new location.
The Pizza Buona is scheduled to close at 11 p.m. tonight. Tomorrow, family members and employees will return to move out equipment.
The pizzeria opened originally as Pizza Bozza, according to a 2011 story in Echo Park Patch. Schweitzer’s husband, Norman, bought the restaurant in the early 1990s from the original owner, Vincent Bozza.
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