Rico’s in Station Road – run by Italian born chef Maurizio Di Franco – has been serving what some say are the ‘best pizzas in Lancashire’ since 1989.
If you’re not local and not one of Rico’s regulars, you might not realise the end terrace on the corner of Dean Street is even a takeaway. It has no sign in its window, no advertised phone number, website or social media page.
Described on Tripadvisor as a ‘hidden gem’, the discreet takeaway only opens two days a week – on Fridays and Saturdays between 5pm and 9pm.
Maurizio (the majority of regulars know him as Rico) might keep a low profile but his authentic Italian dishes have earned him an impressive reputation among local foodies. Some say Rico’s pizzas and pastas were the most authentic they’d tasted outside of Italy.
But after 33 years in his adopted hometown of Bamber Bridge, Rico has decided to hang up his apron.
His son Rico broke the news to customers on Facebook.
He said: “Just a heads up for any regulars on here that go to Rico's Italian takeaway on Station Road.
"After 33 years, my dad is hanging up his apron for the last time and retiring this Friday. He'll be open from 5pm until 9pm as usual.”
He told the Post that his father has sold the premises but they don’t know what the new owner has planned to replace Rico’s.
What do people say about Rico’s – Bamber Bridge’s ‘hidden gem’?
Stephen K told Tripadvisor: “This authentic Italian is a hidden jewel in the middle of Bamber Bridge. Really delicious food, highly recommended the freshly made pizzas. They are to die for.”
Regular customer Mark B said: "We have been using Rico’s for probably 15 years. It’s a takeaway, no seats, no wine. It’s very basic. But, it’s probably the best pizza you are ever going to taste around Preston. It is exceptionally good and Rico’s humour adds to the “experience”.
Another happy customer added: "The pizzas are the most authentic I've experienced outside Italy and only 2 minutes away! The prices are fantastic value and if you want a Calzone like no other... this is the place.”