For the past three years Theresa Nemetz has been growing her Milwaukee Food Tours, some of which – like the Brady Street tour – draw on her Sicilian-American roots.
Now, Nemetz is going all out Italian with her latest invention, Milwaukee's Pizza Tour.
The first bus tour is July 29 and the trek repeats Aug. 12 and 26 and Sept. 9 and 24.
"What better way to explore a city or be a tourist in your own town than with a food tour," asks Nemetz. "We are excited to showcase so many delicious pizzerias in Milwaukee."
The tours, which begin at 6 p.m., will, in Nemetz's words, "sample the quintessential thin crust pizza, grab gourmet slices of tomato goodness, and search for the most historic pies in Milwaukee."
In addition to slices of pizza, tourists will get other treats, drink samples and round-trip transportation. The three-hour tour costs $50 per person.
The tour starts, appropriately, at the West Side Caradaro Club, 5010 W. Vliet St. The Caradaro Club family was the first to serve pizza in Milwaukee, albeit in a long-shuttered Catalano Square location in the Third Ward.
Nemetz says the tour will visit classic pizzerie, along with newer and upscale examples, too.
"We wouldn't want to give away all of the locations," she says, before giving me the OK to name a couple, like Classic Slice North and Marchese's Olive Pit.
Of course, the tours are led by Nemetz herself, who will provide historical background, commentary and interesting stories, too.
Nemetz started Milwaukee Food Tours as a side dish while working another full-time job, but her passion and her organizational skills have since helped her become a Certified Tourism Ambassador (CTA) and a recipient of the 2010 Governor's Rising Star in Tourism Award.
Milwaukee Food Tours offers foot and bus tours for locals, tourists, parties, corporate team-building excursions, educational field trips and more.
There are 1-mile neighborhood walking tours spotlighting Brady Street, the Third Ward, the RiverWalk/Old World Third Street, the Village of Wauwatosa and Cedarburg.
In addition to the Pizza Tour, there are bus tours of Churches & Chocolates, Ghouls & Spirits Adult Trick-or-Treat, and Christmas Around the World Bakery Bus.
For complete details and ticket information for the pizza tour, as well as Milwaukee Food Tours' other treks across town, visit milwaukeefoodtours.com or call (800) 979-3370.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.