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Checking in with Bill at bonoPIZZA

 Belinda Heiman
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Last summer, bonoPizza (also known as bonoTOGO) was regarded as one of the most well loved pizza joints in Columbus during its five-month run in the Short North. Those fortunate enough to have tried it, know that it was not solely the immaculate taste of the pizza creating its popularity, but the handsome masterminds; Bill and Peggy Yerkes; who were behind the great success. They brought the community coming back day after day.

Bill Yerkes, owner of bonoPizza, has been in the restaurant business since 1982 and is still up and at it every day.

While Yerkes quietly closed bonoPizza’s former location in the Short North this past November, he plans to carry on its legacy to a new location that has been sworn to secrecy. There have been some hints that it still could materialize in the Grandview area, but Bill is keeping it under wraps until everything is ready.

“Everyone thinks it’s at one place, but it’s not,” said Yerkes. “We decided to go somewhere bigger, but we haven’t told anyone. It’s going to be a big surprise and announced for the very first time on Columbus Underground. The grand opening of bonoPizza is going to be filmed on live television no matter what’s going on in the kitchen,” Yerkes chuckled.

“Everyone is like family to us,” said Yerkes when referring to his regular customers. “We like the people who come to our restaurants, which are the only reason we do it.”

Yerkes is an extremely approachable and likable man whose stories keep guests, friends and even new faces intrigued. Each doughball that Yerkes kneads is created in to a gourmet masterpiece with a love and passion for good old fashioned pizza baking.

Until bonoPizza returns, Yerkes’ self-produced mobile wood fired pizza oven will continue keeping his fans alive and biting. Keep your eyes peeled for portable Bono; you might just spot Yerkes’ mobile pizza oven at your next local event.

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