LITCHFIELD — Bohemian Pizza recently celebrated its 20th anniversary of being in business. This favorite Litchfield eatery and hangout is best known for its laid-back atmosphere, quirky decor, and most of all, its delicious fare that includes much more than just pizza.
“The restaurant was first established in 1999 with two original owners, one of whom is Gary Copeland who is still with us today,” explained Rene Mackenzie, Communications and Social Media Coordinator. “My husband, Jason Mackenzie, bought out the other original owner in 2006 following his graduation from culinary school.”
Bohemian Pizza, or Boho as it is affectionately referred to by devoted staff and patrons, has been near and dear to the hearts of both Rene and Jason for a long time as both were previously employed there while in high school.
“When the opportunity to bring the restaurant back into our lives came up, it was an easy choice,” Mackenzie said of their decision to purchase.
Pulling into the parking lot, one immediately notices that the nondescript wood-shingled building flaunts many eccentric, whimsical elements. Colored lights are strung about the front porch, pink Adirondack chairs sit among the landscaping, faux palm trees tower near the entrance, and a surfboard is mounted to the porch railing.
Once inside the restaurant, one is greeted by a relaxed and fun vibe — vinyl record covers decorate the walls, a canoe is suspended from the ceiling, a stone, double-sided fireplace anchors the space and two custom-made 2,500- and 1,500-gallon fish tanks teem with fish, eels and other aquatic critters.
The current iteration of the building, however, is the product of a recent and massive renovation completed in 2017. The original building was actually constructed in the 1930s as a residential house. Over the years, multiple additions had been attached. Throughout its history, the building served as home to several businesses including a nursery, coffee shop and steakhouse.
“After acquiring the property that the building resides on, we couldn’t wait to rebuild. The original building needed more repairs than it was worth,” said Mackenzie. The original building was completely razed save for that stone, double-sided fireplace and a single wall.
“Everything else that now exists in the restaurant is completely new, including a much needed expanded kitchen, bar and seating area.”
When rebuilding, “we did not want to lose the character of the original restaurant, so much of the original footprint remains along with the same well-known spunky decor,” Mackenzie said.
Perusing the menu, one can see the Mackenzies offer a large selection of pizzas, including build-your-own options and some favorites like Buffalo Chicken, Margarita and Greek Goddess. A variety of flavorful salads, burgers, pasta dishes, a kid’s menu and desserts are also available.
“We are very happy to be able to offer something for everyone nowadays, including many gluten-free and vegan options,” Mackenzie said.
When asked what makes this Bohemian Pizza such a success after two decades, Mackenzie praised the loyal staff and customers. “We are super proud of our staff. They are fully committed to providing the best food and service each day, and to making every customer feel like they’re part of the Boho family.” It’s the staff’s commitment to quality food and service that keeps patrons coming back time and again.
Boho likes to pay that loyal support forward by giving back to the community, too. “Each month since our reopen after the renovation, we have been able to execute a charity of the month in which we raise funds and awareness for various causes local including schools, animal shelters and veterans, among others,” Mackenzie explained. “We are so lucky to be able to use our space to make a difference.”
Bohemian Pizza is located at 342 Bantam Road, Litchfield. For more information, visit www.bohemianpizza.com/ or call 860-567-3980.