Aurelio’s Pizza, the iconic brand, built its name on quality pizza, friendly service and the passion of the Aurelio family and it’s five generations of customers. CEO Joe Aurelio took that reputation for hard work to another level in February when he climbed 94 floors – 1,623 steps – to hand deliver a pizza at the top of Chicago’s John Hancock Center. The delivery was part of the city’s annual Hustle Up the Hancock, a vertical race that supports the Respiratory Health Association. Aurelio delivered a medium 13-inch cheese pizza to the paramedics waiting at the end of the climb in a respectable time of 20 minutes and 34 seconds. The delivery is believed to be a world record for the highest pizza delivery on foot.

Burgers are one of America’s favorite foods and eight years ago, Smashburger set out with one simple mission: to offer a better burger that consumers were longing for. “Consumers were saying there just was not a good place to get a burger anymore,” President and CEO Scott Crane explains. “We continue to be everyone’s favorite place to eat burgers.”

Smashburger’s burgers are always made-to-order and smashed and seared to perfection on the grill. “At Smashburger, we start by taking a ball of 100 percent fresh never frozen certified Angus beef and smash it for 10 seconds on a hot buttered grill,” Crane says. “This creates a sear on the bottom of the burger that locks in all the juices, creating a tremendous amount of caramelized flavor in a juicy burger you can taste in every bite. Some call the result ‘Meat Candy.’”

Along Interstate 5, almost perfectly between San Francisco and Los Angeles, lies a lush oasis in California’s Central Valley. For nearly 40 years, Harris Ranch Inn & Restaurant has welcomed travelers and locals alike to share in its philosophy of locally sourced, farm-to-table eating. 

“Everything that we do here in the restaurant we try to do from California,” Executive Chef Reagan Roach explains. “We are very proud to be a California company and to support the Californian economy through our efforts.”

Mazzone Hospitality has grown into a leading provider of hospitality services in New York’s Capital Region over the past quarter-century and longer. By striving to please its customers in a wide variety of settings and events, Mazzone Hospitality has built a loyal following on the strength of delicious food and unmatched service.

“I opened my first restaurant in 1980 in downtown Schenectady,” Owner Angelo Mazzone says. “From our earliest days, we established ourselves as a catering company that operates restaurants.” 

Chef Walter Staib is a third-generation restaurateur with more than four decades of culinary experience and a culinary historian with a focus on 18th-century cuisine. With a strong passion for all things 18th century, Staib couldn’t put the RFP written by the National Park Service down for Philadelphia’s City Tavern, which included historic information dating back to the 1770s.

“I got into the historic information and read about the parties that were held here and envisioned George Washington meeting John Adams here,” he says. “I had to do this – reopen the place and show Philadelphia what the 18th century was about.” 

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