Log in

hometown hero

VIDEO: A lifetime of service in the restaurant industry

Lucidi named Peoria Hometown Hero


Joey Lucidi has restaurant service in his blood.

His parents owned and operated 13 different restaurants over 27 years, leaving him with a rich foundation for food service.

Starting at a young age, he came to know and master the inner workings of restaurants — from the dishpit in the back, to the kitchen, and the dinning area up front. When you’ve been involved in every aspect of the restaurant business, it makes you a better leader when patrons flood your restaurant on a busy Friday or Saturday night, Lucidi said.

“Even today, nothing scares me because I’ve seen it all. And when I ask a 16-year-old employee to clean the bathrooms, I don’t feel guilty. It is very easy to ask my employees to do something when I’ve done it myself,” he said. “I have always had a passion for entertaining, cooking and feeding people.”

Lucidi took all that experience growing up and has made a name for himself as a Valley restaurateur, giving back to the Peoria foodie community and beyond.

He has opened restaurants all over the West Valley, with a big presence in Peoria. His businesses have included three Haymakers, The Social, NW Coffee, Cantina Gueros and soon to be more.

Peoria Economic Development Director Jen Stein said Lucidi is a tremendous champion for the city, who truly cares about making a difference in the community.

“His business makes an impact, from veterans to families, and he has thoughtfully created a business model to deliver the utmost quality and customer service,” Stein said. “He continues to invest in Peoria, providing amenities so many residents and visitors appreciate. He believes in creating a sense of community and place through his restaurants.”

For his service to the city of Peoria, Lucidi has been named a Peoria Independent Hometown Hero in the entrepreneur category.

The Hometown Heroes Awards are a celebration of individuals who live or teach in the city, and Peoria businesses for their achievements and distinguished contributions to the community and beyond.

Lucidi will be honored at an awards luncheon next year. The third annual Hometown Heroes luncheon will honor those nominated in 2023.

In partnership with the city of Peoria, Lucidi will also be interviewed by the city and aired on Channel 11.

Lucidi has sponsored and supported local churches, schools and charities, stating that the more involvement he has been given, the more support his establishments have received.

It’s a great circle of life, he said.

He has also been active in the Peoria Chamber of Commerce to promote other young entrepreneurs.

Bobbi Magdaleno, executive director in the office of government and community engagement at ASU, met Lucidi in 2018 when they served as board members on the chamber. Magdaleno said Lucidi’s contributions during that time — his entrepreneurial mindset and motivating spirit — were extraordinary.

“Joey is the best entrepreneur and individual,” Magdaleno said. “His knowledge of business, marketing, and finance were helpful to the chamber as we worked to build the organization as well as support other local businesses.”
Lucidi sees the importance of local restaurants that support the local industry.

He said the industry can be tough, but it is hard not to think of his parents when it comes to inspiration in the business.

They found success, and all the while raised four kids, teaching them good Christian values and above all, staying together.

After 50 years of marriage, that’s “pretty darn impressive,” he said.

Lucidi added that the individual skills of each of his parents were a great partnership in the operation of their restaurants.

His mom ran the back of the house, as well as oversaw the employed human element, and his dad was the front-of-house face.

“Mom and dad worked really well together,” he said. “On Fridays my mom ran the kitchen and was great at smoothing over employee issues.

Meanwhile, dad was not in the kitchen. He was on the floor talking to everybody, building a base of regulars. He remembered everybody’s name. Dad was the king of PR.”

As the restaurant industry has evolved over the years, so too has Lucidi’s endeavors in it. He has new restaurants in the works, including a new concept called Copper & Sage.

Former Peoria City Councilor Vicki Hunt said Lucidi never backs down from a challenge, which has made his restaurants successful over the years.

“It is apparent that Joey loves both the creativity and challenge of his industry,” Hunt said.

Get to know Lucidi more here.