MOD Pizza

Pizza, my favorite food. When someone asks me my favorite pizza, I go with the cheesy answer of “round.” One of my favorite ways to get pizza is at one of the many fast casual restaurants around Columbus. It’s quick, delicious and always tasty. When I had the chance to go to MOD, I didn’t pass it up. What I found out is, MOD Pizza is actually the original fast-casual pizza concept in the country! MOD offers artisan-style pizzas and salads, individually sized, made on demand, and ready in just minutes. They have more than 30 toppings and the price stays the same, regardless of the amount of toppings! Is that a pizza lovers dream or what?!

MOD was founded in 2008 in Seattle by Scott and Ally Svenson. With a family of four active boys, they were constantly on the go from practices to family activities. They struggled with finding a fast option that would meet their lifestyle, but, also offers real food options.  They saw there was a need, but, thought to themselves, “Do we really need another pizza place?” Maybe not, but, what if they could do it differently? What if they could do it better? What if everyone could get exactly what they wanted, made fresh on demand, for as little as possible? And what if employees were paid as much as possible and given real opportunities for growth, even second chances? They were inspired. Inspired to offer pizza in a way that no one had before.  So that’s what the did. Right in the middle of a recession, they opened their first store in downtown Seattle.

Source: MOD Pizza Scott and Ally Svenson, co-founders of MOD Pizza

In Columbus, we currently have three Mod Pizzas open – Polaris (1310 Polaris Pkwy. Columbus, OH 43240), Morse Rd (4784 Morse Rd. Columbus, OH 43230) and The Shops at Rock Fork (333 S. Hamilton Rd. Gahanna, OH 43230). Lucky for us, there are two more locations opening soon – Sawmill (6181 Sawmill Rd, Suite A. Columbus, OH 43017) and Pickerington (1301 Hill Rd N. Pickerington, OH 43147).

My sister, mom and I had the chance to check out the Polaris location, even getting a behind the scenes experience. We met with the manager, Lisa, who was incredibly sweet. Two minutes into our conversation, you could tell how much she loves MOD and truly believes in what they are doing. She was excited to show us the process and let us in on the ‘MOD way.’

The Polaris location is right in front of Polaris Mall. 1310 Polaris Pkwy. Columbus, OH 43240.

The first thing you notice when you walk in, besides the smiles and instant greeting, is the incredible layout and decor. The layout is open and family friendly. The decor is simple, modern and locally inspired. Each MOD you go into will be a different. 

Great patio option.

I love that they have quite a few different table options. This is great when you have a large party! Maybe after practice?

The high tops are a fun option. They are up high enough to where you can see the pizzas being made. Also, booth options, which are nice for the kiddos.

From the start, food authenticity has been important to them – where it comes from, how it’s prepared – how it tastes. From hand-pressing their dough daily, to roasting their own vegetables, to banning the ‘bad stuff’ – they’ve made it a priority to keep their food true. They’re mindful of animal ethics, environmental impact, and working with food partners that share their commitment to quality. If they wouldn’t serve it to their kids, they won’t serve it to you. It’s that simple. I think that says a lot about a company.

They offer original and gluten-free crust.

How cool is this machine? It presses the dough.

This is Ally, my younger sister. She was in charge of making our pizzas. If she was only a little it older, I think she might have a job! First step after pressing the dough? Sauce!

They have five different sauce options: bbq sauce, garlic rub, pesto, red sauce or white sauce.

Like their sauce, they have a few cheese options: asiago, dairy-free, feta, gorgonzola, mozzarella and parmesan. I love that they offer dairy-free.

All of the sauces looked delicious. Each of us ended up getting classic red. Next time, I want to try the BBQ. Yum, BBQ chicken pizza!

The hard part? Choosing which veggies! They have quite a list – artichokes, arugula, basil, black olives, cilantro, green bell peppers, jalapeños, Mama Lil’s peppers, mushrooms, pineapple, red onion, roasted garlic, roasted red peppers, rosemary, fresh chopped spinach and tomatoes.

Meat Options: anchovies, bacon, canadian bacon, grilled chicken, ground beef, mild italian sausage,pepperoni, salami or spicy italian sausage.

It’s all in the wrist!

This is my creation – ‘The Bob’ – a nod to a rock legend, arguably an original mod. White sauce, cilantro, mozzarella, spicy chicken sausage, roasted corn, roasted cauliflower and red onions. Oh, and of course I added bacon. DELICIOUS!

My mom went with a DIY pizza.

The next step is to put it in the oven! MOD’s gas-fired ovens cook at 800-degrees so it only takes a few minutes, depending on the number of toppings, to cook your pizza. Their ovens are pretty big so a lot of pizzas can be cooked at the same time. The result? SUPERFAST, DELICIOUS pizza!

You thought it was ready to eat? Putting it in the oven was the last step? Nope! Make sure to finish it off with a drizzle. Luck for me, I had a chance to try ALL the sauces. Each and everyone of them had their own unique taste, making them the perfect addition to any pizza. My favorite was the pesto drizzle and sri-rancha.

My final pizza. Are you kidding me? How gorgeous is this. I was supposed to bring half home to my husband. Well, I did. Until I got in the car and ate the other half!

Besides offering a mouthwatering menu with endless options, spreading their ‘MODness’ is another priority.  What does that mean? It means they treat their ‘MOD squad’ aka their employees right. They put their squad first, in hopes that they will be a positive change in their lives and the communities where they’re located.  Not only do they have above industry pay From above-industry pay and benefits to hiring people with special needs – including people in need of a second chance – they’re deeply rooted in acceptance, opportunity and development. They have culture of doing good – and believe me, it’s contagious as soon as you walk in! I have never met employees more excited and passionate. It was sweet to hear that as soon as Liz met Ally, one of the co-founders, Ally embraced her and thanked her. They genuinely love their employees.

“MOD Pizza is looking for great people to grow with us. Our company culture celebrates self-expression, genuine hearts and individual spirits who are committed to enjoying life’s journey. We’re looking for smart, savvy leaders who aren’t afraid to have a little fun and let their personalities shine. We also believe in fresh starts. We could judge you on where you’ve been, but we’d rather get excited about where you’re going and all your awesome potential. MOD’s always looking for people who want to work in a fun, fast-paced environment. We celebrate the diversity of our employees, choosing to focus on character and drive rather than putting an emphasis on prior food service experience. Personality? Passion? Pride in what you do? We need to meet you.” – MOD Pizza

We LOVED our experience at MOD – from the people to the atmosphere to the pizza, we were all impressed.  As soon as we walked out, we were all talking about planning our next family dinner there. I gotta get back for a hand-spun milkshake!


1310 Polaris Pkwy
Columbus, OH 43240
(614) 254-6062
Sun-Thurs 10:30AM-10PM
Fri-Sat 10:30AM-11PM