Minsky's Pizza on a roll after 37 years

Kansas City, Mo.-based Minsky's Pizza marks its 37th birthday this week. The brand's first location opened on March 6, 1976 at 5105 Main and is still in existence.

Now, the company includes 14 locations in the Kansas City area and has been recognized by numerous publications for its pizza, including Zagat's 2012 "Ultimate 23 Pizzas in America."

Just last week, Travel + Leisure picked Kansas City as one of the top 10 pizza cities in the U.S., citing Minsky's as "the traditional favorite." Only one other Kansas City establishment — Pizzabella — was included in the city's description.

Additionally, readers of local entertainment magazine The Pitch recently picked Minsky's as Best Pizza in Kansas City, and the concept was named to Google's 2012 "Zeitgeist" list as the most searched restaurant term in Kansas City.

Minsky's was founded by Gregg Johnson, who was also co-founder of Godfather's Pizza prior to this concept. When Kansas City experienced a blizzard last week, Johnson was personally making deliveries, or "gettin' the pizza to the people," as he said. He and his staff delivered orders for two days straight through two storms and more than 12 inches of snow accumulation.

Johnson calls the Minsky's name a "two beer idea." Prior to its original opening, a patron at a college bar overheard him talking about the new pizza place he was planning and chimed in, "Why don't ya call it Minsky's?" — a reference to the New York City burlesque house of the early 1900's.

To celebrate its 37th birthday, Minsky's is officially launching a new beer on April 10: Minsky's Burlesque Lager. The company is doing a VIP launch party at one of the northland locations on that date. The draft beer will then be available on tap at all locations.

The beer should complement the brand's gourmet pizzas that feature fresh, hand-rolled dough and 100-percent Wisconsin mozzarella cheese, as well as sandwiches, salads and pastas. Minsky's also offers take-and-bake pizza and gluten-free pizza, and recently received GREAT Kitchens training from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness.

Check out some of Minsky's popular dishes.

Read more about operations management.

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