Nicoletta Pizzeria in the East Village
Pizza is hands down one of my favorite foods to eat. There is something so incredibly satisfying about it to me. Plain cheese or margherita is always my go-to. I’ll get toppings once in a while, but for me, the simpler, the better.
Chef Michael White, from Marea and Osteria Morini, opened up Nicoletta in the East Village. It’s an affordable sit-down pizzeria that I was really excited to try out. 1) Because I love pizza. 2) Because I love Osteria Morini. You’d figure you put two good things together and get something just as good, but not so much the case here.
The lunch started off well, I ordered a Manhattan Special on tap. If you haven’t had one before, Manhattan Specials are espresso sodas that I LOVE. It’s a New York thing. The company is based in Brooklyn and started all the way back in 1895. Usually when you leave New York City, you have problems finding it. Anyway, I’m pretty much happy during the duration I have a Manhattan Special in my hand.
Next up were the meatballs and focaccia. The focaccia bread was a bit too oily for me, but the meatballs were lovely. Light, saucy and cheesy. But of course, I forced myself to stop after just one because I was saving room for what was suppose to be the star of the meal, the pizza.
What’s interesting is that the tables have slots for the pizza stands. Pretty smart idea since it makes good use of space and prevents you from knocking your pizza over. They logoed the hell out of this place though between all the N’s on the tables and glassware. It seemed slightly weird, as if you were in a commercial, watching another commercial…and then another. Oh wait, or also like when you watch a movie and catch all the placement ads.
Am I blabbing on to much? You want to read about the pizza, don’t you? Sorry, I’m sleepy and waiting for my dough to rise (making bread), so I’m a bit distracted. But back to the pizza!
We ordered the Classica pizza which is simply: mozzarella, tomato and basil. At first bite, I thought, this is pretty good. At second bite, I thought, actually, it’s kind of thick, a bit too thick for me. At third bite, I thought, wait, why does this dough and crust feel so familiar. At fourth bite, I thought, Nicoletta pizza is just like Pizza Hut! And that made me sad. Not because I don’t like Pizza Hut pizza, but sad that my Nicolletta pizza was so reminiscent of it. I guess I just wasn’t expecting a chain pizza. I actually didn’t want to eat anymore after my first slice, which is weird because usually I can’t stop eating pizza. But I just didn’t feel satisfied by it enough to keep going. The more I ate it, the more I didn’t want it.
HOWEVER! The end to my meal was fantastic! You guys know I have a weird obsession with frozen yogurt, soft serve, gelato and ice cream. Well, Nicoletta’s soft serve gelato is so freaking good. Thick, creamy, rich and flavorful, they have great toppings if you choose to have any from salted caramel to pistachios. I got mine on side so that I could eat the gelato plain, or with one or both toppings. I have never had soft serve gelato before, but I would definitely head back to Nicoletta for this sweet treat.
6.5 out of 10
160 Second Ave (between 10th and 11th str)
New York, NY 10003
– Joyce Huang