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With over 15 years in the industry working alongside the crew at Toronto's beloved Vesuvio of 63 years, Juniors Pizza owner Shane Lemieux is no rookie in the pizza world. When the west end staple announced that they would be closing their doors in April, the longstanding pizzeria received an outpour of support and loyal customers waited in line for hours to get the last slice of nostalgia. Shane knew the customers would feel the same longing for good, New York-style pizza that he felt, and so he took his knowledge and some of his former colleagues, including the pizza-maker and opened up something of his own.
Opening a business is challenging, no matter the year or season, nonetheless during a pandemic. But Juniors, named after the Vesuvio neighbourhood pizza-maker legend, has already made a mark in the Roncesvalles food scene.
The team at Juniors has taken everything they learnt at Vesuvio's and put their own hearts into it. With a recipe so precious, 63 years in the making -- reproducing it is next to impossible. From the perfectly proofed dough to the natural, beautiful tomato sauce, Juniors produces a delicious product with light, pillowy texture and topped with the best quality ingredients.
They don't overcomplicate the traditional New York pie, but they do refine it. With pizzas like your Classic Cheese, Ettore's with anchovies, bacon, tomato and hot peppers, and a real favourite, the Boomshakalaka, topped with calabrese salami, hot capicollo, hot peppers, and chili oil, Juniors knows what they're doing. They also offer classic Caesar salads and some build-your-own pies.
Doing what they've done in such a short time is no small feat -- they've rehired eight Vesuvio employees who had lost their jobs due to the pandemic and have sold out completely in the first few weeks of opening. So make sure to order one of their pies before they're gone -- available through DoorDash or call directly to place your orders. Juniors is located at 2243 Dundas Street West and is open Tuesday to Sunday from 2 p.m. until late.