I Married a Pizza Guy

Phil Pamphilis

I met my husband back when I was selling real estate. I walked into his pizza place and bellied up to the counter to place my order to go. A man with a horizontal striped shirt bee lined it to the counter from the kitchen to take my order. He was very friendly, loquacious, with bright green eyes. Far from my mind was the fact that I would eventually marry a pizza guy.

Phillip N. Pamphilis, owner of Papa Nick's Pizza in Cleveland, Ohio.

Being a sales person, I told him that I was a real estate agent and gave him my business card. He said his name was Phil and that he had been looking for a house to buy and would like to meet with me to see what I could find for him. My initial reaction was, great! I may have a future sale.

We met at a restaurant and went over all of the properties that met his criteria. We had dinner and laughed, a lot. He was charming and had a great sense of humor. I never laughed so much. Enjoying each others company we proceeded to a club downtown to continue our conversation.

There, we ended up dancing, laughing and having some cocktails. We had a marvelous few hours together and time flew by. It was around midnight when he took me back to my car, we parted and drove our separate ways. Before leaving, we made a tentative appointment to meet to look at houses.

All the while I thought, score! I just might have a buyer for a house. Little did I know that he was thinking the same thing, but he wasn’t thinking of a house, he was thinking of me. I didn’t know this until years later when we ended up dating.

After five years of dating we got married in Lake Tahoe, to the chagrin of our families, who all wanted a big Greek/Italian wedding. Weddings are EXPENSIVE and even though everyone wanted this and that, no one was offering to “pitch in” and I wasn’t going to get married in a pizza place.

When drama began between family members, we decided to have a destination wedding in Lake Tahoe. Everyone was invited but the only people who flew out were our best friends. We had a gorgeous wedding with the picturesque Lake Tahoe all around us. We partied for 3 days going to casinos, restaurants and a real-life cowboy town. After which, everyone flew home and we continued on to Napa Valley.

Annamarie and Phil Pamphilis in Lake Tahoe on their honeymoon with their best friends.

Napa and Sonoma were beautiful and back in 1995, magical. Our hotel was the Napa Valley Inn (no longer there) and in the middle of the courtyard was a huge pond where black and white swans swam, it was so romantic. Our first night we dined next to the waters edge eating a gourmet meal and drinking sumptuous wine.

During the day we hit the wineries and met some interesting and fascinating people. We met Mr. Kunde from Kunde Winery. He was just a farmer with a winery and sat and chatted with us for some time. We felt so special as we snacked on cheese while drinking reserve wines.

After a couple of days we drove over to San Francisco and had lunch on Fisherman’s Wharf next to sea lions. An incredible experience and a first for both of us.

Sea lions at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco.

We ended our honeymoon in Las Vegas where we swam in a posh swimming pool during the day and watched spectacular shows and dined on delectable food at night. The entire trip was incredible and one in which we will never forget.

To think our journey together all began 30 years ago with a chance meeting in my husband’s pizza place. If I hadn’t been selling real estate I probably wouldn’t have talked to him, that horizontal striped shirt he was wearing did not work for me, but his charm and sense of humor eventually won my heart.

Annamarie and Phil Pamphilis.

How did you meet your spouse? Tell me your story and I will post it here. We all love a good story. So tell me, how did you guys meet?

Stay safe, Annamarie

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