Portesi's was founded by George Portesi. George was the son of Silvio and Adrianna Portesi of Altopascio, Italy, a small town near Pisa. He grew up in Italy and came to the United States by himself at the age of 17. He settled in Chicago, Illinois, more specifically, Cicero. He was a young risk-taker in a new country with a new language, and a dream of trying to create a better life for himself.