Welcome to the first of our resurrected series: Business of the Week! Each week, we’ll feature a new foodservice operation that’s doing big things in their community. From upscale restaurants to taco trucks, all of these businesses have a unique point of view in the foodservice industry—and they like to cook good food! Our first business is the Anaheim White House in Anaheim, Calif.
About the Restaurant
The Anaheim White House is a national historic landmark built in 1909. Sir Bruno Serato, originally from Verona, Italy, started his career in foodservice as a busboy and kept climbing until he became the proud owner of the Anaheim White House in 1987. The restaurant served up Northern Italian Steak House cuisine to everyone from locals to celebrities for 30 years before a fire ripped through the building and destroyed it. The restaurant immediately set a plan in motion to rebuild, and they reopened their doors in April 2018.
Anaheim White House is designed with ornate European décor in each of its 12 dining rooms. The menu is comprised of traditional Italian favorites like Lobster Ravioli and Osso Buco Milanese as well as inventive items like the Enta Volcano and Salmon Chocolat.
When California shutdown indoor dining during the coronavirus, the Anaheim White House took advantage of their large outdoor space to offer al fresco dining.
In addition to his passion for the restaurant business, Serato and his mother, Caterina, discovered an opportunity to give back to their community through food. When Serato and his mother went to visit the Boys and Girls Club of Anaheim, located near the restaurant, they saw a 6-year-old boy eating chips for dinner because that was all he had. Caterina suggested Serato make the boy some pasta. In April 2005, Caterina’s Club was born. Now, 32 cities at 96 locations provide meals to more than 5,000 children a day. The club’s first major supporter was the Barilla Group, which made an initial donation of 10,000 pounds of pasta.
In September 2014, Mamma Caterina passed, leaving Serato to take up the torch and continue what she started. Every year, KFI AM 640 puts on a PastaThon event for the club; they raised more than $400K and 100,000 lbs. of pasta and sauce in 2019.
When the coronavirus pandemic hit California, Caterina’s Club began providing meals for families experiencing food insecurity due to unemployment. According to the OC Register, Caterina’s Club had served more than one million meals by July 15.
“No children should go to bed hungry,” said Serato.
Serato has garnered local, national and international media attention for his accomplishments with Caterina’s Club and has been honored with a humanitarian award at the U.S. Capitol and a knighthood by the President of Italy.
Click here to listen to Serato talk about his experiences on the Cambro Eats Podcast.
Nominate your foodservice business to be the Cambro Business of the Week – Click here!