Oxford native Thomas Seminera Jr. is rounding out pizza in Franklin.
Seminera, 24, launched Seminera’s Pizzeria, an Italian-style eatery at 226 Main St. in Franklin, in early November.
Seminera said, though he has worked in the food-service industry his “whole life,” Seminera’s marks his first solo venture.
“I grew up in the restaurant business,” he said. “I was in and out of restaurants and my dad had a couple that he managed, and my aunts. Then, living in California over the last winter, I got a call that my dad had passed away and I came back to New York and pizza just started calling me again. I seen the opportunity to do my own thing, and I just enjoy doing it.”
Seminera, who worked at the site when it was Marshall’s Pizza, said he is refining and broadening the menu.
“We have pretty much what was here when it was Marshall’s … but I tried to add on — wraps, burgers and salads, all sorts of salads — so it’s really just a little bit of everything that you would get when you go to an Italian restaurant,” he said. “And I’d like to have more pasta dishes in the future.
“I’ve changed everything, and I’m making my own sauces and marinara and (using) all fresh herbs and everything for it, instead of using dried stuff,” Seminera continued. “I feel like there’s good products out there and other people might go the cheap route, but, like the cheese I use, it’s all Bacio cheese.”
Popular items, Seminera said, include his calzones, strombolis and gourmet pizzas. He said he hopes, too, to introduce pizza specials and party deals.
“I try to do a couple different (gourmet pies) every day,” he said. “I always have the chicken-bacon-ranch and buffalo chicken and the barbecue chicken. That was the hard part, trying to make the menu and only putting so many on there, but people are happy with the menu and say there’s a lot here.”
That positivity, Seminera said at the time of the interview, has been pervasive.
“I’ve had an insane amount of help from other people; it’s crazy,” he said. “I have a football team from Unatego coming in, and the Franklin school has been really supportive and doing pizza for (events). It’s only been a week, and it’s taking off.
“There’s people from Delhi coming in, Walton, my family from all over and friends from all over stopping in to say ‘hi,’ so I’ve seen a lot of people,” Seminera continued. “I just like the community here and I like the support they’re giving me here. And the pizza, I enjoy doing it. If I can get it all dialed in and run it smoothly, it’s going to be nice.”
Seminera’s Pizza is open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday to Wednesday, and 11 to 8, Thursday to Sunday, with local delivery available.
For more information or to view the menu, find “Seminera’s Pizza” on Facebook.