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Founded in 1884, Booches is a restaurant and pool hall at 110 S. 9th Street in downtown Columbia, Missouri. Their cheeseburgers, which are served on wax paper, were named one of the top ten burgers in America by USA Today in 2000. In 2005, Jerry Shriver of USA Today included Booches's hamburger on the list of top 25 dishes from his "Down-home Dining" project.
Booches has three full-sized pool tables, two snooker tables, and one billiard table (no pockets) for three cushion billiards play. Booches hosts yearly invitation-only Snooker and 3-cushion tournaments.
Booches is known for the saying "Closed on Sunday, see you in church," among other witticisms posted on their walls, including "No sniveling." Also adorning the walls are faux-original comic strips incorporating Booches's regulars, team photos of the Mizzou football teams in the early 1900s, and other old-time sports memorabilia.
During the mid to late 1970s, the then-owners of Booches's edited and published four issues of the Review la Booche, a literary journal featuring poetry, prose, sketches and photographs by contributors of such prominence as John Ciardi, William Stafford, Elton Glaser, Frank Stack and Richard Eberhart, along with local and regional contributors. The review was revived in 1990 for a fifth and final issue.
Booches received its name when its original owner, Paul Blucher Venable, was nicknamed "Booch" as a child by writer Eugene Field. The restaurant has gone through many owners in its time and was male-only until the 1970s. Today, it is a haven for University of Missouri and St. Louis Cardinals sports fans, and has a considerably more family-friendly atmosphere.
Handwritten gift certificates are sold at this restaurant.
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