Living in downtown Grand Rapids, there are only a couple independently owned pizza businesses to get a good pie. In my opinion, the best place downtown to fulfill your pizza needs is Vito’s Pizza on West Fulton Street. Vito’s is located just a few blocks away from Grand Valley’s downtown campus. They offer delivery service, pick-up orders, and you also have the option to eat your meal on location (indoor table seating and outdoor patio seating).
Steve Grinwis has been in the pizza business his whole life. He began “working at Gino’s (previously located on Michigan Street) at the age of 13.” In 1973 Grinwis and his business partner Vito opened Vito’s Pizza at its original location (corner of Fulton and Straight) and in 1979, Vito’s moved to its current location at 658 Fulton Street. Although Vito has now moved out of state, Grinwis and his partner continue to stay in touch and swap new recipes and ideas for the business here in Grand Rapids.
Vito’s menu offers a little some thing for everyone. Your pizza, made with a secret tomato sauce created by Vito, can be ordered with four different types of crust (thick crust, thin crust, pan pizza, Chicago style) and a wide variety of toppings: italian chicken, banana peppers, mushroom, pepperoni, etc. According to Grinwis, pepperoni is the most popular topping for pizzas. There are pasta options (their spaghetti and meatball dinner is to die for), sub sandwiches, stromboli, desserts, and much more. Vito’s “makes a killer lasagna,” and Grinwis also recommends trying the fettuccine. By the way, everything on the menu is made from scratch on site.
If you come down to Vito’s to pick up some food, you may notice some movie memorabilia (including a gorilla mask) in a glass showcase by the desk. In the summer of 2010, Sony Pictures filmed 30 Minutes or Less in West Michigan. Vito’s Pizza was used as the pizza business in the film. Jesse Eisenberg even volunteered to deliver pizzas one night in order to get a feel for his movie character. Working with the film crew “for two months was a lot of fun,” mentioned Grinwis. Vito’s also fed the crew at various filming locations.