When the idea came to me to start this sort of blog, Flamingo is the exact reason why. I didn’t know it at the time, but as I sat and spoke to Nick Divich and Christy Simpson, I couldn’t help but feel excitement as they explained Flamingo and what it means to them. Here is a bit about how they describe the history behind the business and how it evolved to be what it is today.
Flamingo began in downtown Gary in 1941. Gus Romeo was the original proprietor bringing Italian fare and pizza to the region. Years later they would move to Glen Park to make room for the genesis center. Eventually they settled in on the shores of Lake Michigan, right here at an abandoned Texaco station. The business was passed down through family until the year 2000 when purchased by, Gary Native, William Levack. Will, with the help of Christy, kept the recipes and old traditions in place as he expanded, remodeled, and upgraded the facility. In 2016, longtime manager, Christy and her business partner Nick made an offer to purchase Flamingo, with the promise of maintaining the quality and integrity that the business was founded on. Taking a hands-on ownership approach and ensuring only the freshest ingredients be used, has been one of the major keys to our success. Our dough is still made from scratch using the same flour they used in 1941, almost 77 years ago. We grind our own sausage and top it all off with a unique blend of cheeses. All of this combined with an antique stone bake oven, makes our pizza stand out. We have shipped pizza across the country to help folks take a bite of nostalgia as they celebrate monumental birthdays and anniversaries. Though pizza is our name, over the years we have made quite a name for ourselves in the Steak and Seafood Business. We offer Fresh Canadian lake perch, walleye and black tiger shrimp that is hand breaded in our signature breading and fried to perfection. All our steaks are hand cut and trimmed to order before being flamed grilled on an open char broiler, hand cut pork chops are also always a hit. We run pizza specials on Monday and offer a home-made pot roast on Thursday that often sells out. When available, Blue gill highlights our Friday menu. On Saturday we Slow Roast Prime Ribeye, which is hand seasoned and cut to order. During football you will find wing specials on Sunday and there is almost always a new local craft beer on tap, to try.
– Christy Simpson & Nick Divich
They talked about the care and extra mile they go to create an eating experience to please those who have been coming for decades and those just trying it. I must say that since speaking with them, I can’t get the perch or the hand cut steak out of my head! However, it isn’t just the food and local craft beers that bring the crowds in, it’s the community and family they create.
They talked about giving back to the loyal customers, during customer appreciation. They reminisced about fun golf outings, and fondly spoke of the people they see daily. They talked about how they put on fun events from their Flamingo Fest, with bands and burgers, to golf outings with customers, who are now friends and family. They spoke of the pride that they feel when they can give someone the ability to go back in time by taking a bite of pizza that tastes just the same as it did seventy-seven, yes seventy-seven, years ago.
Flamingo isn’t just an amazing pizza place or just a great steak and seafood spot…Flamingo is community. It is a feeling of being home. It is a place where all are welcome to enjoy a mouth watering meal, a cold craft beer, and even better company.
You can visit Flamingo at 8341 Locust St. Gary, IN
Kitchen hours Sun – Thurs 11am – 10pm – Bar open later
Kitchen hours Fri & Sat 11am -11pm – Bar open later