Michiana's Menu: Antonio's offers more than just award winning pizza
ELKHART, Ind. -- “I always had grown up in the restaurant business, I thought that everybody’s parents did things like this,” says Carmela Cataldo. “I always remembered wanting to work at the restaurant because my older siblings would go, and I thought this is so lame, finally when I was 10 they let me in.”
Carmela Cataldo won first place in the 2020 Best in the Midwest Pizza Competition. First place in the 2021 International Pizza Competition in the Midwest Category, and for the 2021 International Pizza Competition, she won second overall.
She competed against people from all over the world, a total of 85 competitors. She is only 18 years old.
But it is no surprise Carmela has been awarded and recognized for her pizzas at such a young age, it in fact, is in her blood. Meet Carmela’s father, Paul.
“She made a great pizza, she is a hard worker, she is dedicated, if I had ten more like her, I would not have to work anymore,” says Paul Cataldo, Owner of Antonio’s. “It is very rewarding as a parent, to see your child do so well, in any industry in any realm of life you want your kid to do well, to see her take what I did and make it better that was awesome”
Paul Cataldo won first place himself in the International Pizza Competition beating out pizza makers from all over the world. While hearing their stories is remarkable in itself, to think you can even try the father and daughter duos award winning pizza for yourself! Which leads us to…Antonio’s. The Italian restaurant has been a staple to Michiana for 42 years. Customers expect authentic Italian dishes, but also a kitchen staff who just knows pizza.
“I always have say I have 6 kids, they are all boys except for 5 of them,” says Cataldo. “I have 100% of my girls working for me in some capacity, most full time. We homeschool so it makes it easier on the schedule and they are really hard workers, if it wasn’t for the girls, I think we would have to close because of the lack of help right now.”
Yes - it is not only Carmela with the magic touch! Paul’s kids all grew up in the business. He explains they start at the salad line, to the pasta line, to the pizza line. While a pasta line might sound easy, from the dishes that 15-year-old Gianna whip up, it’s clear for this entire family, cooking is instinct! Even Gemma, at 16 years old, runs the entire pizza line, and made the pizza sauce for her sister’s award-winning dish.
With such a talented crew, Paul can only hope Antonio’s stays with the family!
Plan your visit here.