1949: Maria and Al opened their first Italian Restaurant with well known and respected Chef, Domenic Piscatelli. (Pictured Maria, Al and family on opening night)
1955: While Liberace was the highest paid entertainer in Las Vegas earning $50,000 a week; Maria, Al, with family Angie and Lou Ruvo opened the Venetian Pizzeria on Fremont Street.(Pictured Angie, Larry Ruvo, Al, Lorraine and Maria)
1963: While Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack were causing global excitement on the Las Vegas Strip; Maria, Al, with family Angie and Lou Ruvo opened the Venetian Restaurant on West Sahara Avenue. (Pictured Al, Maria, Angie and Lou)
1969: Maria and Al’s daughter Lorraine, now a Las Vegas singer and entertainer, opened the historic Landmark Hotel with her group, “The Lauri Perry Four." Lorraine’s boss and owner of the hotel was Howard Hughes. With the money she earned from singing, Lorraine began to purchase vacant land in Las Vegas and on the “South Strip."
1972: While Elvis was electrifying Las Vegas audiences, Maria and Al joined forces with their daughter, Lorraine, to build a restaurant on Lorraine’s land at Tropicana and Eastern. They named the restaurant, “The Bootlegger,” in honor of Maria’s grandfather, Luigi. (Pictured Lorraine, Maria and Al)
1994: As an entertainer, restaurateur, and small business advocate, Lorraine ran for political office and became a Clark County Commissioner and the first woman chairperson of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitor’s Authority (LVCA.)
1998: Lorraine was elected as the 32nd Lieutenant Governor of the State of Nevada, leading Tourism and Economic Development.
2001: Lorraine, Maria, Al, Cousin Joel Davies, and family opened The Bootlegger Italian Bistro on Las Vegas Boulevard, “South Strip,” continuing the legacy. (Pictured Al and Maria)
2003: Lorraine’s son, Ron Mancuso, joined the family team as chief operating officer. Ron’s background in the world of contemporary music as a guitar player, composer, and music producer added a new generation of creativity and energy to the family business. As the Bistro grew to a 24-hour, 7 days a week operation, Ron’s leadership allowed his mother, Lorraine, to continue her public service commitment as Lt. Governor for the State of Nevada, where she served for eight years overseeing the state’s tourism and economic development initiatives, as well as serving as President of the Nevada State Senate.
2006: Lorraine married recording artist and music variety talk show host Dennis Bono who brought his entertainment talents to the family enterprise. (Pictured Dennis and Lorraine)
2012: Great-Grandmother Maria, Grandmother Lorraine, ‘Pa Pa’ Dennis, Ron, and Cousin Joel welcomed Ron’s son, Roman, to the work force at The Bootlegger, adding the 4th generation to the legendary family restaurant. (Pictured "Famiglia" Ron, Lorraine, Mama Maria, Roman, Dennis and Zia )
2017: Chef Maria celebrated with family and friends her 100th birthday! (Pictured Mama Maria on her 100th Birthday. )
2018: Chef Maria celebrated with family and friends her 101st birthday! (Pictured Mama Maria on her 101st Birthday. )
2019: Chef Maria celebrated with family and friends her 102nd birthday! (Pictured Mama Maria on her 102nd Birthday with daughter Lorraine. )