The world’s first pizza museum
A few items from Brian Dwyer's collection of pizza ephemera. (Brian Dwyer)
A new museum in Philadelphia is serving up a slice of US culture through the celebration of one of its favourite foods.
Pizza Brain, a working pizzeria and the world’s first museum dedicated to the cuisine, was born after owner Brian Dwyer organized a widely successful art show in 2010 called “Give Pizza a Chance”. Seeing his community’s passion for the pie, he continued to add to his impressive collection of pizza ephemera, enough for it to be certified by the Guinness World Records in 2011 as the largest collection of pizza-related items in the world.
From trolls with pizza aprons to songs about sauce to pizza-themed arcade games, the collection will rotate through the restaurant like an interactive art installation. Visitors can play one of the pizza-themed games and listen to movie clips about pizza from famous films. Eventually, the entire collection will also be accessible through an electronic archive.
The pizzeria itself will serve up what Dwyer and its chef, Joe Hunter, call “true American-style pizza” -- artisan thick crust pizza, made with locally sourced ingredients, ranging from the traditional cheese and pepperoni to more unusual creations like thyme French onion soup.
Funded in part by a successful online fundraising campaign, Pizza Brain opens on 7 September in the Fishtown neighbourhood of Philadelphia. A special selection of slices will be available to order, as well as pizza-flavoured ice cream, courtesy of Little Baby’s Ice Cream, which shares the space.