Cookbook cover for Passion for Pizza

PASSION FOR PIZZA: A Journey Through Thick and Thin to Find the Pizza Elite

Craig Whitson, Tore Gjesteland, Mats Widén, Kenneth Hansen

Agate Publishing
March 2015


ISBN: 978-1572841604



Craig Whitson is a restaurateur and cookbook author. He has lived in Norway since moving from his native Oklahoma in 1980. He won Food Person of the Year at Norway’s largest culinary festival in 2003.


Tore Gjesteland is the owner of the Jonas B. Gunderson restaurants, and has received a total of six gold medals in the Hospitality Service Management Association International (HSMAI) marketing competition.


Mats Widén’s photography has been published in more than 10 cookbooks. He did the photography for Cognac, Calvados and Armagnac, which won a Gourmand World Cookbook Award in 2001.



Kenneth Hansen was the designer for Cognac, Calvados and Armagnac as well as several other titles with the Bølgen & Moi team. He also operates his own company Blaane Guiding Great Brands AS, where he serves as the Senior Creative Director/Art Director.

Pizza is a global obsession, and PASSION FOR PIZZA celebrates the personalities, stories, pride, and excitement behind one of the world’s favorite foods. PASSION FOR PIZZA is not only a cookbook and a work of culinary history, but also a tribute to the people and places that make this dish so popular around the world.

PASSION FOR PIZZA begins in Italy, introducing readers to pizzaioli (pizza makers) in cities such as Naples, Rome, and Palermo. From there, the book travels through the United States, devoting plenty of attention to regional varieties like New York-style pizza, Chicago deep dish, and more. The authors offer entertaining profiles of the people who produce the cheeses, tomatoes, flour, and other ingredients used in pizza-making, illuminating the key characters in the global story of pizza.

With more than 50 easy-to-follow recipes for pizzas, crusts, and sauces; 40-plus profiles of great pizzerias around the world; and 20 profiles of the people behind the pizza, this book will inspire home cooks to make great pizza in their own kitchens—with the pizza elite at their side.