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Highland Park restaurants have come and gone but Folliero’s pizzeria has endured for 50 years

Antonio Folliero of Folliero Italian Food and PIza

Antonio Folliero (left) in an undated photo | Courtesy Folliero family

By JACQUELINE FERNANDEZ

Highland Park  — Pricey new bistros have opened. Young crowds flock to new bars and coffee houses. But amid all these newcomers on Figueroa Street stands Folliero’s Italian Food and Pizza, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

While the owners are contemplating some changes, Folliero’s long-standing presence in the neighborhood has set it apart. The pizzeria’s longevity even earned it a proclamation from Councilmember Gil Cedillo earlier this year

Folliero’s long-history and strong community ties make it “a true landmark in Highland Park,” said Teresa Folliero, the manager and daughter of pizzeria founders Antonio and Marta Folliero. “Through all of the years, many special friendships have been built at Folliero’s.

Her parents emigrated from Italy to Canada and then made their home in California, opening their restaurant in 1968. They weren’t unfamiliar with the food business; both of their fathers were artisan bakers.

“One of my fondest memories was asking my dad to twirl the pizza dough up in the air, and he would do it perfectly,” Folliero added.

Pizza remains Follierio's signature dish

Photo by Jacqueline Fernandez

Pizza remains Folliero’s  signature dish, followed by the lasagna. “The house sauce is an old family recipe, as is the pizza,” said Teresa. She said the family-operated restaurant strives to keep its offerings consistent and the prices fair, which could be the secret to its longevity.

Now, five decades after her parents opened the business, Folliero is planning changes.

She wants to get a bigger location. But don’t fret, Folliero’s Italian Food and Pizza has no intention of leaving Highland Park, she said.

Folliero’s Italian Food and Pizza is at 5566 Figueroa St. at Avenue 56

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6 comments

  1. Seriously, my absolute favorite pizza. Hope it’s around for another 50!!

  2. I was there one night with a friend and noticed that their beer fridge said “Do NOT help yourself!!!” OK! I wouldn’t dare! So when the waiter came around, my friend and I ordered beers, and he said, “Oh sure, help yourself!”

    Love their eggplant parm (with a little blue cheese borrowed from the salad) and so appreciate their prices!

  3. It’s been my favorite since it was across the street on Figueroa the best meatball sandwich for me simple and tasty The Cook’s the guys in the front those are the ones that have made the place famous and happy the only thing I wish is that they would deliver

  4. I fell in love with their Chorizo Pizza!
    Best pizza in town, hands down.

  5. I grew up going to Fillieros. I really hope they don’t move out of this location. Maybe they should open a second restaurant instead.

  6. Agreed. Current Folliero’s location, vibe/ambiance, and food are all excellent. Another location encouraged but don’t lose this one

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