Borruso’s Pizza and Pasta was opened in 1994 by Jamie Borruso, a man with a vision of creating a cosy, family-style Italian restaurant that would make his patrons feel like they were right at home in “Mama’s” kitchen. Authenticity was an absolute must, and Jamie dedicated his time and effort into perfecting the perfect pizza.
Crispy, thin crusts, generous toppings and lots of flavour were his motto, and this recipe for success has resulted in just that.
Borruso’s initially opened on Campground Road in Rondebosch as a takeaway business in the hopes that they would draw business from the many families that lived in the area. Being a family-man himself, Jamie realised the importance of “keeping it in the family” and decided to involve his wife in the business too. Together they became the face of Borruso’s, always there, attending to each customer’s needs. It wasn’t long before the Borruso’s brand became popular amongst the boys of the Rondebosch Boys High School boarding house, and in turn, amongst the teachers and parents as well. Jamie soon realised he would have to expand but still wanted to maintain the cosy atmosphere he had always wanted. He added a mere eight tables for those diners who wished to eat at the restaurant as opposed to taking away their meals and the restaurant traded successfully in this way for years. Open 6 nights a week, there was often a queue out the front door of diners waiting to be seated!
Due to the success of the Rondebosch branch, Jamie opened a second branch in Kenilworth. This branch was bigger, but still managed to maintain the cosy “at home” feel that had been established in Rondebosch. It wasn’t long before the success of this one matched, or even surpassed that of Rondebosch. Sadly, Jamie decided to emigrate overseas in 1998, to pursue other business ventures. The Kenilworth branch was sold to the loyal managers that were in place at the time and the Rondebosch branch was sold to Jamie’s brother and his fiancé. The success of the Kenilworth branch grew as time passed and is still a successful business today, with queues of patrons out the door waiting to be seated almost every night. Rondebosch grew even more in popularity and the new owners realised the importance of expanding the premises. They expanded into the premises next door and immediately grew from a 20-seater restaurant to a 60-seater!
The business ran successfully for many years until the owners decided to pursue other careers and sold to a new owner. Unfortunately, this new owner did not have the same vision of a family-style restaurant and changed the winning “recipe” that had made Borruso’s so popular in the past. The “regulars” that used to frequent Borruso’s became fewer as time passed, and it was evident that the owners would have to sell.
In September of 2006, a couple had just returned from overseas in the hopes of opening a new restaurant.
Deon, having managed the Borruso’s Kenilworth branch for five years decided that this would be the perfect fit for him and his fiancé, Janine. With a little bit of help from his parents, Kevin and Sandy, this awesome foursome became the proud new owners of Borruso’s Rondebosch in November 2006.
We realised there was an urgent need to restore the original vision of a family restaurant, and quickly began working on changing, not only the look of the restaurant inside and out, but also the atmosphere. We created an outside area adding an extra 20 seats to the restaurant. We have added a kiddies menu, some delectable new desserts and pastas to the regular menu and created a range of pizza specials that have proven to be very popular! We have gone from strength to strength over the last 18 months and are confident that we have managed to regain the regular family clientele that used to frequent the restaurant. Open 7 nights a week, we are full for almost all of them.
Borruso’s is once again a family-run business, and we, the owners, pride ourselves on great food, and service with a smile, every time.
We are still very much the face of the business and do not believe in leaving managers in place to run it for us. We understand the importance of building relationships with our regular clientele and creating new ones with those who have never visited us before. We are confident that the business will remain in the family for many years to come and are hopeful that we will be able to expand into new areas in the near future.