The year is 1903 and on the corner of Chelsea and Porter streets a little Italian bakery is opening in East Boston by the Santarpio family. Teddy Roosevelt is President, trolleys run up and down the neighborhood’s tree lined streets, and construction on the Maverick Station tunnel, or Maverick Portal, that will connect the neighborhood to mainland Boston is well underway.
In the world of sports the Boston Red Sox, known at the time as the Boston Americans, are well on their way to the country’s first modern World Series title.
In October of that year Cy Young, who has a 28-9 record, and fellow Sox pitching ace Bill Dinneen took on the Pittsburgh Pirates and led their team to its first ever World Series title in baseball.
The Sox would add four more titles in 1912, 1915, 1916 and 1918 before an 86 year drought that was broken with a World Series victory in 2004 against the Cardinals. The Sox would add two more titles in 2007, 2013 and, after one of the best seasons in franchise history, a fourth title this year.
Last week, Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner and team President and CEO Sam Kennedy took a pit stop to the famed Santarpio’s Pizza on their way back from Alex Cora’s hometown in Puerto Rico.
With them was the Red Sox 2018 World Series trophy.
Santarpio’s employees and patrons eagerly lined up to congratulate Werner and Kennedy and have a picture snapped with the trophy–a trophy that was first won by the beloved hometeam the year ‘Tarps opened its doors.
“We are grateful that the Sox ownerships first stop when returning from Puerto Rico was to bring the World Series trophy to Santarpio’s,” said owner Frank Santarpio.
Longtime Santarpio’s waiter Michael Gobbi reported that the Red Sox ownership ordered a few pizzas and were gracious to staff and patrons that wanted to stop and say congratulations and take a picture with the iconic trophy.
Hopefully if the Red Sox’s pull off a repeat next year the ownership will still bring the trophy to the original Santarpio’s location because next year the iconic pizzeria will join other local favorite’s like Kelly’s Roast Beef in Revere and Sullivan’s Castle Island in Southie at Logan International Airport. Santarpio’s expansion into the airport is part of MarketPlace Logan, a program aimed at letting travelers to experience the culture from surrounding neighborhoods like Eastie, Southie and Revere within the confines of the airport.
For decades Santarpio’s, or ‘Tarps if you’re an Eastie resident, has gained the reputation of being an unpolished oasis that has refused to age with the time.
The bill of fare has been unchanged and since it was turned into a pizza place officially in 1966 there’s only been a few deviations from the main staples of pizza, grilled lamb or sausage and beer.