The seven Acevedo brothers all have worked in pizza shops and Italian restaurants since they began to come to America from South America 15 years ago, beginning with the eldest, Luis, in Harrington.
The native Spanish speakers all learned English on the job, and they learned the ins and outs of cooking pizza and chicken parmigiana, et cetera. In essence, the older brothers taught the younger brothers.
Luis Acevedo eventually bought the Harrington pizza shop he started out in, which had since been relocated to a spot near Food Lion.
Leo Acevedo then took over that shop in Harrington, and Angelo Acevedo opened his own shop in Federalsburg, Md.
Leo and younger brother Fernando Acevedo branched out again, this time with Milano's Pizza & Pasta near East Dover Elementary School in the Tudor Business Park off South Little Creek Road. Leo broached the idea of opening a shop in Dover back in June, and they opened in the State Capital two months ago in the site formerly occupied by Little Italy's.
Since then, Leo and Fernando Acevedo said they had worked hard to make a name for themselves and to let the world know that their pizza shop was under new ownership and management .
Milano's Pizza & Pasta offers New York-styled pizza, hot and cold subs, wings and chicken parmigiana, among other dishes.
"Everything we make is fresh – the sauce, pizza dough, parmigiana, meatballs," Leo Acevedo said. "Everything, we make here."
And they were well aware of the fact that Dover already had a plethora of pizza shops. So, they carefully researched the local market.
"There is a lot of competition here but for that reason we compared prices, lowered prices," Fernando Acevedo said. "We added a little bit more in the amount of food that we serve in trying to compete with the businesses around here."
They also implemented a 10-mile delivery radius to reach as much of central Kent County as possible.
Based on feedback from customers, Fernando and Leo have also given some thought to expanding the menu to Mexican cuisine. The trick is finding the right cook, said Fernando, whose family hails from Ecuador.
Milano's offers a 10 percent discount to senior citizens, college students with ID and members of the U.S. military. Additional discounts are available for schools as well.