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Video: A peek inside Columbia’s Shakespeare’s Pizza

Pizzas hot out of the oven at Shakespeare’s Pizza in Columbia.
Pizzas hot out of the oven at Shakespeare’s Pizza in Columbia. The Kansas City Star

Shakespeare's Pizza in Columbia celebrates the passion of pizza lovers.

The pizzeria has been open since 1973 and now has three locations in the central Missouri city. Kurt Mirtsching, the restaurant’s general manager, estimates that between 1,000 and 2,500 people are served every week.

“Fresh ingredients make our pizza awesome,” Mirtsching wrote in an email. “Only fresh ingredients can produce good pizza.”

In 2010 the Shakespeare’s Masterpiece pizza was named one of the country’s best college foods by ABC's "Good Morning America." The Masterpiece is topped with red onions, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, fresh mushrooms, black olives, green peppers, Italian sausage and lean ground beef, according to the restaurant’s website.

The website also touts the “Shakespearience,” where six people can make their own pizzas — from spinning the crusts to adding sauce and toppings — for $156.78. But call before you sign up for it, said manager Toby Epstein. He said it is generally offered based on events in the city, and that the price fluctuates depending on the ingredients.

The restaurant has served politicians, tourists, University of Missouri students and, of course, Columbia-area residents.

“As long as we don't burn it, they usually really like it,” Mirtsching said.

Zahid Gishkori is a visiting journalist from Pakistan through the Alfred Friendly Press Partners program. To reach him, call 816-234-4333 or send email to Follow him on Twitter at zahidgishkori.