When I was a little girl, pizza wasn’t just a slice of bread and cheese eaten as a quick meal between classes; pizza meant a special occasion. In my old Korean home, my whole family would gather around the gigantic pie of delicious pizza and enjoy each slice over joyful conversation. But it wasn’t just the tradition that was different; the pizza was different as well! I’m so glad that Shanghai has a Mr. Pizza – a Korean pizza chain that presents classic and elaborate pizza that takes a unique approach to italian cuisine.
I visited here several times with my friends and family. Nicely located in Thumb Plaza, Pudong, the restaurant has a modern vibe and outdoor tables available as well. As you walk inside, you can take a peek through the kitchen window – the pizza dough being thrust in the air and then into the oven – and see that everything is being made fresh. They often offer lunch set deals, which typically cost around 50 RMB and consist of a salad + an oven baked spaghetti or rice + a drink. Nevertheless, my favorite is no doubt the pizza (which typically range from 80 to 100 RMB for a whole pizza)… behold the golden crust! Excuse the pieces of spinach and mushroom on the heavenly strings of stretchy cheese.
Their special pizza is created with a crust filled with sweet potato cream cheese. It basically has the texture of mashed potatoes, but it’s a perfect mix of sweet and savory. You don’t have to worry about getting bored while eating that pizza crust, because you can enjoy every minute of it while eating this one! For the pizza itself, this had spinach, chicken, mushroom, and olives. My other favorite is the Hawaiian, with shrimp, pineapples, tomatoes, and a mashed potato core.
If you’re a fan of regular pizza crust, they have that option as well. A cheese-filled crust is also available, which I’ve tried and enjoyed…but not as much as the sweet potato one.
As you may have realized by now, a lot of Korean style pizzas are topping-heavy and smaller in size. They don’t have a strong tomato sauce base, while the flavor and aroma of cheese is still very much present. For this reason, some might find this pizza a bit heavy for their taste, but I think the overall taste that the mix of toppings and the pizza bread/crust creates is quite different and novel compared to other pizzas, and with the size of the slices, the ‘heaviness’, if any, seems totally doable!
Now moving onto the lunch set: the salad is a chicken salad, which was partly drained in dressing and not exactly superb, but it was bigger than I expected and not bad for a side dish at a restaurant that doesn’t specialize in salads. Plus, it’s a good way to keep your diet somewhat balanced…right? Hahaha.
I try not to drink soda, so I usually order tea for the drink option (a cold one because it’s still scorching hot over here). They bring out iced yuzu tea, which is a refreshing burst of oriental flavor and is actually a nice break from just normal iced tea (I also think the mason jars are cute).
The oven-baked spaghetti seems like a really good deal, considering the price of the lunch set and the surprisingly good taste of the pasta. There’s really nothing special about this dish – I could probably make this at home – but melted cheese (lots of it) and tomato sauce simply does the trick. I think it goes pretty well with the taste of the pizza as well.
Mr. Pizza is a great place you can visit with your family or your friends; for me, it’s a nice way to bond over slices of pizza, just the way I did when I was a little girl. The unique taste of Korean pizza will definitely be a special experience.
Lane 199 Fangdian Lu, 1/F, Thumb Plaza
021 5076 6223
Mon – Sun 11:00am – 10:00pm