The community is mourning the loss of George Kolitsas, who died last week at the age of 81.
He was one of the founders of Houston Pizza, and credited with creating what we now know as “Regina Style” Pizza.
George was born in Greece in 1940 and traveled the world working on commercial ships as a cook, and purser.
He immigrated to Canada in 1960, and was working as a chef in Banff, when he met his wife Niki. The couple settled in Regina, and George continued to pursue his passion for cooking, particularly pizza.
He started with the the Kitchener Café. The restaurant also served as a test bed for his recipes for pizza, especially sauce, which he believed was the key to good pizza. He and his brothers became urban legends as they kept the sauce recipe secret. There were stories that the brothers would shred the labels from the containers of ingredients they used in the recipe to keep it secret.
George, with his brothers John, Gus and Tony, opened the first Houston Pizza on Hill avenue in Regina in 1970. The first franchise location opened in Moose Jaw in 1979, and the rest is history. Now, Houston Pizza is a big franchise, and one of the first names in pizza in a city that takes pride in its pie.
The funeral service will be held this afternoon at St Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church at 1 o’clock.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that the money be directed to St Paul’s Greek Orthodox Church.