Vic Marchese has achieved something few small business owners ever get to claim -- in just five-and-a-half years after opening Main St. Pizza Company, he now owns the building.
"I'm just shocked by how much business we're doing," Marchese said. "It's good. It really is. I'm thankful. I'm thankful to the guy upstairs, I guess."
The success has meant, however, that the original Main St. Pizza space at 206 E. Main St., Batavia, has gotten crowded. Marchese said he needs to expand. He certainly needs to expand the kitchen, he said, but he would also like more seating area.
"It's crazy, but on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday, I'll have 20 or 30 people standing out there," Marchese said.
Marchese has thought about putting in a dining room upstairs, but said it would be more cost effective to open up a dining area in the basement. He would also like to acquire space in front of the building from the city and put in a deck or patio for diners.
Marchese didn't make the building purchase on his own. His nephew, Paul Marchese, owner of Marchese Computers on Ellicott Street, is co-owner of the building.
The acquisition comes just in time for Vic to celebrate National Pizza Month in October, a promotion he's getting fully behind, with one lucky customer becoming eligible to win a big screen TV.
Marchese said he loves food, pizza, especially the pizza business. He's been at it for more than 35 years. He worked 20 years in somebody else's pizza shop, then ran Vic's Doghouse on Park Road for nine years, and now Main St. Pizza.
"I really love what I do," Vic said.
Ken Mistler, whose downtown building ownership dropped from 10 properties to nine with the sale, said it was Vic's idea and he supported it because he believes Marchese will be a responsible downtown landlord. Mistler noted that if a poor owner got a hold of a building such as the one Vic bought, it could bring down his own property values.
"I was glad to sell it to him because I'm sure he's going to take care of the building," Mistler said. "He will be an asset as a landlord downtown."