Start-Up Spotlight – Amore Cantina “Italian Street Food meets Rural Manitoba with Plenty of Entrepreneurial Flavour”
November 4, 2022

Amore Pizzeria is the product of a shared passion for high quality traditional Italian street food and pizza between two long term friends and business partners Trevor Jones and Giuseppe D’Amore. The team at North Forge East had the pleasure of meeting with Trevor to find out a little more about their business.

Trevor Jones

Trevor has worked in a wide range of business areas and has extensive experience in Mediterranean kitchens, both in the home with his Italian heritage and in the workplace where he worked from the age of 15years, in both Italian and Greek restaurant kitchens and also has experience as a butcher. His more recent employment experience has been in Real Estate and Marketing, providing a great ‘recipe’ for a successful business model. Trevor’s passion for good quality Italian food has grown over the years and he became even more determined to “Elevate Italian Cuisine, Italian Pizzas, and Street foods not widely seen in Canada.” Trevor said “I’m a businessman with a passion for pizza.”

Giuseppe has established a longstanding and successful family Bakery of 50 years, in Italy, where he lived and worked for most of his life. His bakery focuses on good high quality ingredients and the best traditional Italian recipes, those of his mother Mama D’Amore. Giuseppe relocated to Canada three years ago to build this business with his good friend here in Manitoba.

In 2021 Trevor relocated to Pinawa, Manitoba, from Kenora, Ontario, where he seemed to almost stumble on North Forge East. The thought of having a business incubator in a small rural town was incredible. Once he met with Shane Li, the President of NFE, it was clear that the opportunities were vast and it made the decision very easy to become a member. Since joining NFE Trevor said it has “opened doors” to other wonderful organizations, such as Futurpreneur, and gave access to lots of valuable networking and funding opportunities. The next step was to substantiate the market need for their business and to complete proof of concept for onward growth.

Amore Cantina fresh bread

The concept for their business was good simple Italian food and they were soon approached by a nationwide branding firm wanting to invest in their ideas. The Amore pair decided that it wasn’t the right fit for them and would like to grow their business slowly and keep the feel of a “Mama and Papa” style kitchen.

Amore Cantina fresh dough

The business model for Amore Pizzeria was not steadfast and the pair decided to try a few different style ventures before committing to one particular venture type. With this in mind they started trading in 2021 when the Arena in Lac du Bonnet offered their kitchens to then ‘Amore Cantina’ with a focus on high quality fresh ingredients in making their dishes, including their signature Panzerotti and Calzone stuffed pizzas. The pair even ran field suppers for local farming families so their workers could be fed with good hearty food, without any lost resources in the field. The venture proved very successful in all aspects and from there, they received an offer to run the kitchen at The Rivers Edge Golf Course, situated close to the Brokenhead River on the outskirts of Beausejour, Manitoba. Amore Pizzeria were running their business from The Rivers Edge Golf Course to great success, the focaccia breads were a particular specialty! However, the golfing season came to a close at the end of September 2022, and so did the trading from their kitchen.

So what does the future hold for this partnership with a passion for good simple Italian food? Well, the plans shared with North Forge East were nothing short of spectacular. The duo will be heading to Italy for some wonderful networking opportunities and the investigation of further potential collaborations, to ensure the authenticity of the food in their restaurants. There was mention of the possibility of food trucks, and possible delivery services. Not to mention their wider plans for expansion. Amore Pizzeria will have a ‘fresh’ and bright future. Once back in Canada, they will be focusing on bringing together their board of directors with varying backgrounds and firming up their business strategy for moving forward.

Trevor said his focus is “Selling Happiness One Slice at a Time!” while keeping it “As simple as possible.” This certainly sounds like a recipe for success!

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