Monday, April 26, 2010

The trendiest pizza on earth.

Last Sunday, I met my friends Caroline and Emily for brunch at Pulino's, Keith McNally's latest restaurant, and the newest addition to the now-completely-gentrified corner of Bowery and Houston. McNally is the force behind the Odéon, Balthazar, Schiller's Liquor Bar, get the idea. He specializes in creating buzz paired with seemingly time-worn atmosphere, and Pulino's is no exception to the rule.

Ostensibly a pizza restaurant (McNally hired San Francisco's Nate Appleman to create the menu and run the joint), it's first and foremost a gathering place for hipsters, hangers-on and (at brunch, at least) downtown parents and their children.

The three of us decided to share a few things, starting with an appetizer of asparagus, ramps and rhubarb. The dish was clearly meant to be a celebration of early spring, featuring the season's three star ingredients. The grassy asparagus, tart rhubarb and stinky ramps actually went quite well together; the flavors weren't revolutionary, but it was tasty. The dish was completely overwhelmed, however, by two things: the mound of far-too-peppery black pepper mascarpone hiding beneath the asparagus, and the price: $14.

Next, we tried the margherita pizza, which we ordered with an egg on top. The pizza was very good - crisp but still chewy, and the sauce, cheese and basil were each top-notch. The egg was put on a bit early and the yolk was cooked all the way through, which was a bit disappointing. Overall, though, it's a solid pizza.

The star of the meal, by far, was the sweet pizza we shared as a dessert. It was topped with pecorino, pears, cinnamon and sugar (and, my guess is, a bit of butter). It was just sweet enough, and the pears were still a bit firm and not at all mushy. We devoured this, licked our fingers, and resolved to come back and order a large one very, very soon.

282 Bowery (at Houston Street)


elizabeth said...

My very favorite pizza in the world is right around the corner from there at L'Asso. My "final meal" choice is almost definitely the Tartufo pizza with the L'asso salad (asparagus, fennel hearts of palm, goat cheese, pistachios, and yum!).

I'm really enjoying your blog, Meg; keep up the good work! (Pictures of Emi don't hurt, either...)

-Liz Speck

Meg Blocker said...

Wow, that salad sounds amazing. I have to get myself to L'Asso and try it out!

So glad you like the blog, Speck - I have to say I am also partial to pictures of little miss Emi.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin