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THREE GUYS PLAYING WITH FIRE

“Food is all we’ve ever done,” says our co-founder Greg Atkin, who, like his business partners Rick Post and Tom White, began working in restaurants at a very young age. The three co-workers became fast friends, spending their time cooking up “the dream of opening a restaurant together someday.”

After years of climbing the ladder in various restaurant positions, Tom White temporarily left his friends to attend the California Culinary Academy, giving him outstanding connections and experiences. Upon his return to New Mexico, Chef White’s knowledge of Italian fare eventually prompted the partners to open two of the state’s best-known Italian Restaurants.

Although the full-service restaurants were highly successful, Greg, Rick and Tom still harbored the desire to create a unique Italian pizzeria the likes of which hadn’t been seen in the southwest.

Incorporating concepts garnered from stylish San Francisco haunts with traditional wood-firing methods learned during his extended sabbatical visiting Italy’s traditional pizzerias, Chef White presented his idea to the partners: authentic wood oven pizza prepared with the highest-quality ingredients, served in a casually upscale atmosphere.

The first Il Vicino Wood Oven Pizza location opened for business in Albuquerque’s Nob Hill in 1992, instantly rousing the interest and appetites of pizza lovers looking for something a cut above the regular pie. Over the years, our menu has expanded to include many other Italian entrees created by Chef White. Our wood-fired pizzas vary from the conventional Margherita to gourmet-inspired toppings such as goat cheese, fiery shrimp or roasted chicken. Filling out the menu are calzones, Panini and Piadine flatbread sandwiches, fresh signature salads, and baked lasagnas and pastas. We also serve a wide selection of premium wines, award-winning microbrewed beers, homemade root beer and tempting desserts.

Join us at one of our eight locations in Colorado, Kansas or New Mexico, where you just might see Greg, Rick or Tom.

Left to right: partners Greg Atkin, Chef Tom White, and Rick Post.

CHEF TOM WHITE: THE CREATIVE VISION BEHIND THE FOOD

Tom White’s first foray into the food industry was as a butcher’s apprentice at the age of 14. His teenage years were spent learning the paces of a busy kitchen while he worked various restaurant jobs, from washing dishes to bussing and waiting tables to management. Barely in his 20’s and armed with the dream of one day owning his own restaurant, Tom moved to San Francisco to attend the famed California Culinary Academy (CCA).

California presented unmatched opportunity and Tom soon found himself rubbing shoulders with some of the biggest figures in the culinary world. While at the CCA, he entered many culinary competitions and upon graduation in 1984, was awarded the opportunity to live and work in Napa Valley as the Private chef for  Beringer Vineyards and several other notable wineries throughout the Napa and Sonoma area, where he often entertained celebrated chefs such as  Jacques Pépin, Jeremiah Tower, Alice Waters, and food writer M.F.K. Fisher.

Having graduated at the top of his class from the CCA, Tom enjoyed a successful run in the California gastronomic scene, including work at Spectrum Foods, Vivande Porte Via in San Francisco and Chianti Ristorante in Los Angeles. However, he longed to return to his home state and before long, rejoined his old friends Greg Atkin and Rick Post to open two of New Mexico’s most celebrated Italian eateries—Scalo Northern Italian Grill in Albuquerque and Pranzo Italian Grill in Santa Fe.

Always searching for inspiration, Tom took an extended sabbatical to live and work in Italy, and it was during his time there he became enamored with the various styles of cooking from ancient wood fired ovens. Impressed by the speed, yet high quality of traditionally fired food, he began piecing together the concept of a wood oven pizzeria combined with the elegant, yet casual atmosphere of some of his favorite California establishments.

Tom’s idea culminated in the opening of the first Il Vicino Wood Oven Pizza in Albuquerque’s Nob Hill in 1992, where his creative entrees are the focal point of the expansive menu. From traditional pizzas like our Margherita to contemporary favorites with ingredients like fiery shrimp, goat cheese or roasted chicken, the Il Vicino menu is a culmination of Chef White’s innovative vision and vast experience.

Left to right: Greg Atkin, Chef Tom White, Rick Post

THREE GUYS PLAYING WITH FIRE

“Food is all we’ve ever done,” says our co-founder Greg Atkin, who, like his business partners Rick Post and Tom White, began working in restaurants at a very young age. The three co-workers became fast friends, spending their time cooking up “the dream of opening a restaurant together someday.”

After years of climbing the ladder in various restaurant positions, Tom White temporarily left his friends to attend the California Culinary Academy, giving him outstanding connections and experiences. Upon his return to New Mexico, Chef White’s knowledge of Italian fare eventually prompted the partners to open two of the state’s best-known Italian Restaurants.

Although the full-service restaurants were highly successful, Greg, Rick and Tom still harbored the desire to create a unique Italian pizzeria the likes of which hadn’t been seen in the southwest.

Incorporating concepts garnered from stylish San Francisco haunts with traditional wood-firing methods learned during his extended sabbatical visiting Italy’s traditional pizzerias, Chef White presented his idea to the partners: authentic wood oven pizza prepared with the highest-quality ingredients, served in a casually upscale atmosphere.

The first Il Vicino Wood Oven Pizza location opened for business in Albuquerque’s Nob Hill in 1992, instantly rousing the interest and appetites of pizza lovers looking for something a cut above the regular pie. Over the years, our menu has expanded to include many other Italian entrees created by Chef White. Our wood-fired pizzas vary from the conventional Margherita to gourmet-inspired toppings such as goat cheese, fiery shrimp or roasted chicken. Filling out the menu are calzones, Panini and Piadine flatbread sandwiches, fresh signature salads, and baked lasagnas and pastas. We also serve a wide selection of premium wines, award-winning microbrewed beers, homemade root beer and tempting desserts.

Join us at one of our eight locations in Colorado, Kansas or New Mexico, where you just might see Greg, Rick or Tom.

CHEF TOM WHITE: THE CREATIVE VISION BEHIND THE FOOD

Tom White’s first foray into the food industry was as a butcher’s apprentice at the age of 14. His teenage years were spent learning the paces of a busy kitchen while he worked various restaurant jobs, from washing dishes to bussing and waiting tables to management. Barely in his 20’s and armed with the dream of one day owning his own restaurant, Tom moved to San Francisco to attend the famed California Culinary Academy (CCA).

California presented unmatched opportunity and Tom soon found himself rubbing shoulders with some of the biggest figures in the culinary world. While at the CCA, he entered many culinary competitions and upon graduation in 1984, was awarded the opportunity to live and work in Napa Valley as the Private chef for  Beringer Vineyards and several other notable wineries throughout the Napa and Sonoma area, where he often entertained celebrated chefs such as  Jacques Pépin, Jeremiah Tower, Alice Waters, and food writer M.F.K. Fisher.

Having graduated at the top of his class from the CCA, Tom enjoyed a successful run in the California gastronomic scene, including work at Spectrum Foods, Vivande Porte Via in San Francisco and Chianti Ristorante in Los Angeles. However, he longed to return to his home state and before long, rejoined his old friends Greg Atkin and Rick Post to open two of New Mexico’s most celebrated Italian eateries—Scalo Northern Italian Grill in Albuquerque and Pranzo Italian Grill in Santa Fe.

Always searching for inspiration, Tom took an extended sabbatical to live and work in Italy, and it was during his time there he became enamored with the various styles of cooking from ancient wood fired ovens. Impressed by the speed, yet high quality of traditionally fired food, he began piecing together the concept of a wood oven pizzeria combined with the elegant, yet casual atmosphere of some of his favorite California establishments.

Tom’s idea culminated in the opening of the first Il Vicino Wood Oven Pizza in Albuquerque’s Nob Hill in 1992, where his creative entrees are the focal point of the expansive menu. From traditional pizzas like our Margherita to contemporary favorites with ingredients like fiery shrimp, goat cheese or roasted chicken, the Il Vicino menu is a culmination of Chef White’s innovative vision and vast experience.

SINCE 1992  |  ALBUQUERQUE  |  SANTA FE  |  COLORADO SPRINGS  |  WICHITA