One man has found a way to convert his love of travel into his day job and hobby – one that is worthy of the Guinness World Record seal of approval. The man in question is Scott Wiener, a “pizza-lover”, who has amassed an astonishing assortment of 750 pizza boxes from more than 50 countries around the world.
His collection largely came as an outgrowth of his business, “Scott’s Pizza Tours“, which currently gives daily tours of New York City’s tastiest pizzas for hungry tourists.
Wiener fell in love with Italian fast food when he was a student at Syracuse University. Following graduation, he returned to his home in New Jersey, but continuously found himself taking friends out for pizza day trips around New York City’s five boroughs. When the groups became too big, he rented a bus and, voilà, a business was born.
His love affair with pizza boxes, however, began seven years ago when, on a trip to Israel, he saw a bright yellow pizza box with blue Hebrew writing on it. It was an epiphany: “When you’re in a different country, you kind of expect … different customs, different languages,” he said. (But this) “totally rocked me.”
In addition to the seminal pizza box from Israel, Wiener’s collection now contains pizza boxes from exotic destinations such as Thailand and Kazakhstan, neither of which is known for its pizza. Wiener says he thinks most people believe he’s “nuts.”
The jewel of his collection, however, is the world’s largest usable pizza box, measuring 4-1/2 feet by 4-1/2 feet, for a square Sicilian pie.
In fact, Wiener is so enamored of his collection, he’s written a book on pizza boxes called “Viva la Pizza!: The Art of the Pizza Box,” which is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, among other retail book outlets.
To date, Wiener estimates he has taken 25,000 guests on 1,500 tours so far. On his tours, Wiener takes visitors to the most well-know pizza emporia in New York City—such as Lombardi’s and John’s of Greenwich Village—but also some lesser-known but spectacular parlors in the outer boroughs, such as Joe & Pat’s in Staten Island. One thing he won’t reveal, however, is which spot is his favorite.