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Roberta’s Pizza, Brooklyn

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It’s hard to describe Roberta’s Pizza.
If you think in an objective way and put together observed facts you could say it is a mix between a pizzeria, an organic farm, a creative kitchen, a craft beer garden, a serious Italian oenoteca and even a radio station.
If you add a little subjectiveness you could also add “Hipster hangout”, food experiment, patchwork building etc…
In any case, when you pass this door into this rusty shack you will find a very special place. And to come to the point: I love Roberta’s (and that doesn’t mean I’m a hipster). You will see why.

This fascinating place is located in Bushwick, an up and coming neighbourhood in Brooklyn that is a bit further away than Williamsburg coming from Manhattan, but nevertheless quickly reachable with the L line. Artist and students are settling down here and their craving for good food is only satisfied by a few places. One of those is Robertas.

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The main room is furbished with wooden tables and decorated with many collected details. With all this wood, old and new, it somehow reminds me of a ski-chalet on top of the Tirolian Alps. I wouldn’t be surprised if guests walk in with skisuits and ski boots.

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The always busy Pizza Oven. Most of the guests are coming for Pizza and Beer. And that’s also the first thing I have to say: the pizza is delicious and plays in the league of the best in NY. Together with craft beer or one of the many Italian Vinos on the list you can’t go wrong.

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In the backyard, a small farm is planted on top of decommissioned freight containers. Roberta’s definitely gives their ingredient quality more than just thought.

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The other kitchen of Roberta’s Pizza. This is chef Carlo Mirarchi‘s playground. We’re moving far away from pizza here, but on the other hand I feel the same intention of using perfect ingredients. It’s maybe this product quality that makes me like his food in the first place, but his creativity and talent, his interest in inventing combinations can’t be overseen. Many say he’s a chef to watch and I couldn’t agree less. By the way, he recently was invited to cook at the Omnivore Food Festival in Deauville among chefs like Kobe Desmarault, Alain Passard or David Kinch… no bad company!

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But first, back to beer and pizza! Roberta’s serves craft beers and microbrews. Taps are changing regularly. Your thirst for a good draft will certainly be satisfied.

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Even served in those marmelade jars, those craft beers are refreshing and a good transition from afternoon to aperitivo.

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A simple Margherita. When it comes to Pizza, there are many experts in NY, so it’s hard to argue. But this was delicious and is certainly the best Pizza in Bushwick.

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But now the creative part. Fresh Beau Soleil Oysters with Meyer Lemon Granita.

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I happily gulped them down with a fresh Italian white. Simple, yet creative. Who would have thought to encounter such kind of cooking in Bushwick?

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And it goes on. Seared Diver Scallops with Testa, Ramps and Black Garlic. Simple combinatins. PErfect quality of ingredients. A touch of creativity and a flawless execution. What more to expect?

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Pici with Pig Tail Ragu and Chili. An Italian Mama couldn’t have made them better.

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…with compliments of the kitchen, can’t recall the type of fish though (tile fish is my only memory)

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Skirt Steak, Fingerling Potatoes, Mustard Greens, Salsa Verde. If this dish doesn’t require lots of creativity, it certainly profits from the excellent meat quality and the flawless execution.

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BYO Red. Wow this was 25 years old and felt like 2 years old. Light and complex. Nice stuff. Thanks again, Toby!

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Pizza oven corner

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The garden.

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Well, to sum it up: pizze are good, but it’s the whole thing that attracts me. Somehow one can feel like being part of a food experiment when eating there, with roofgardens providing herbs and the idea of uniting everything that tastes good.
Most important the chefs creativity is a factor to come by and give the non-pizza part of the menu a try. It isn’t a big menu, but it definitely is worth the short ride with the L line if you stay in Manhattan.
Not less important, if you just crave ham and cheese platters and a huge choice of Italian wines, this is certainly a place to go!

Roberta’s Pizza
261 Moore St Brooklyn,NY
Phone: 718-417-1118
Mon-Fri 12p.m.-Midnight
Sat-Sun 11a.m.-Midnight
Subway: L line, Morgan Ave

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