"Mystic Pizza" is a real pizza parlor, located at 55 West Main St. in Mystic, Connecticut. Writer Amy Holden Jones was vacationing in Mystic one summer, saw the pizza parlor and was inspired to write the story. After the movie came out, the real Mystic Pizza shop became so popular, lines would stretch to the sidewalk and patrons would regularly steal mementos from the restaurant.
According to the '80s Movie Rewind website: "In 1973, the Zelepo's opened Mystic Pizza with a secret recipe that led them to success. The walls of the real Mystic Pizza are covered in photographs which had been taken during production. Although it doesn't look anything like the one in the movie, it became so popular that it could barely keep up with the pizza demand. People lined up on the sidewalk to eat at this place. Menus and matches were disappearing all the time. Not too long ago, a line of frozen pizzas was developed that matches the Mystic Pizza recipe. They are only available in the States".
Liam Neeson, who had co-starred with Julia Roberts whilst making Satisfaction (1988), visited the set of this picture. The pair had allegedly had a personal relationship on that earlier movie. Roberts then allegedly started seeing one of the grips whilst filming Mystic Pizza (1988).
The "Mystic Pizza" restaurant in Mystic was not where the movie was filmed. Only one scene of the movie was actually filmed in Mystic village, which was the scene where the fishing boat was going through the draw bridge. Mystic is a popular tourist destination that would have been too crowded for filming a movie so the filming was done in the sleepy neighboring town of Stonington, CT. They used a business on Water street for restaurant filming, and in the early part of the movie there is a scene where a pizza is being delivered via motor scooter, where they go past the town green where the two old cannons are on display.
Many movie posters for the film featured a long text preamble that read: "Discover a movie which hits home about love, friendship, dreams and life. A movie that you'll be talking about long afterwards. Experience something special, something romantic, something honest".
The American town of Mystic in the state of Connecticut, according to the Wikipedia website, "...is a village and census-designated place (CDP) in New London County, Connecticut, in the United States. The population was 4,205 at the 2010 census. Mystic has no independent government because it is not a legally recognized municipality in the state of Connecticut. Rather, Mystic is located within the towns of Groton (west of the Mystic River, and also known as West Mystic) and Stonington (east of the Mystic River)".
The meaning and relevance of the movie's name, as explained by show-business trade paper 'Variety', is that the film's "title refers to a pizza parlor in the heavily Portuguese fishing town of Mystic, Conn[ecticut]" in the USA.
The nick-name of Katherine Arujo (Annabeth Gish) was "Kat", whilst the nick-name of Charles Gordon Windsor, Jr. (Adam Storke) was "Charlie", and the nickname of television food critic Hector Freshette (Louis Turenne) was "The Fireside Gourmet".
The name of the sailing boat was "Jo Jo" of the Port of Mystic, Connecticut. Jo Jo is also the first name of one of the three lead teenage girl characters who work at the "Mystic Pizza" pizza bar. She is played by actress Lili Taylor.