Showing posts with label pizza. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pizza. Show all posts

12/27/11

Elemental Dining

Williamsburg is fast becoming (or already is) the new awesome place to own a restaurant. To stand out and survive, each has to have something unique to draw people in and keep them happy hungry customers. Would a menu complete with Italian-style pizzas, South American seafood dishes and juicy burritos do the trick? I think so. 


On the border of McCarren Park, away from the hustle and bustle of Bedford Ave., you'll find Cu 29 Copper. Named to bring about thoughts of chemistry and harmony between different cuisines, the restaurant was decorated in warm hues of rust and of course, copper, with the center point being the large brick oven. I was invited by the owners on a nippy Sunday night to sample the menu and get a feel for this hidden gem.

We were seated in the large back room, with a view out to the good size outdoor patio. How I wished the weather was warmer so that we could have sat outside! When we arrived a family was finishing up their meal and a couple was canoodling/eating dinner on a cozy couch. There was a rather large elevated space in the corner and the host told us that they regularly have live music on weeknights. 


We started with the Roasted Garlic Shrimp. Talk about garlic. The sizzling dish packed a punch of flavor. I would watch out for this dish on a first date, but man oh man was it delicious. The shrimp were succulent, and my only complaint would be that I wanted more bread to sop up the remaining sauce. 

Roasted Garlic Shrimp

The next dish was Cu 29 Copper's Signature Pizza. The fluffy, slightly blackened (in a good way) crust was piled high with pepperoni, sweet sausage, peppers, mushrooms, red onions, black olives, hot cherry peppers and mozzarella cheese. With a slight kick, this pizza was super tasty. We came close to finishing it, but then the waiter reminded us we still had one more dish to try.

Cu Signature Pizza

The last dish, and my favorite, was the Seafood Moqueca, a traditional Latin seafood stew with coconut milk, lobster broth, cilantro and toasted pine nuts, served over rice. This dish came with lots of extra bread so as soon as we slurped up the mussels and found all the bits of calamari, we left no broth at all. The yellow rice was amazing as well after it had been sitting in the stew for so long.

Seafood Moqueca
Taking a look at the rest of the menu, I'm intrigued by the other pizzas (Italian Stallion anyone?), the tacos (especially the shrimp tacos with chipotle mole and the tuna tacos with sliced mandarin pico de gallo) and the banana nutella crepes (can't resist!). Drinks are reasonably priced with beers for $5 and signature cocktails ranging from $8-$10. They have a great lunch menu as well with specials around $8, and almost all the online reviews I've read about this place rave about its brunch.

Cu 29 Copper is located at 232 N. 12th Street (between Driggs Ave and Roebling Street).

Cu 29 Copper on Urbanspoon

3/1/11

Meet Your New Go-To Pizza Joint

Every once in a while, I stumble upon a restaurant that deserves so much more attention than I think it gets. La Bella in Murray Hill is one of those gems.

My boyfriend Mike and I decided to check out this relatively new pizza joint before hitting up a movie at the gigantic (well for Manhattan) Kipps Bay Theaters a few months ago. We shared a Caesar Salad and a medium pizza and from then on we've been hooked. It's not much to look at, but it's cozy, slightly dark and romantic, and the location couldn't be more convenient to the movie theaters, as it's essentially across the street.

Walking in, you'll see a to-go counter, but I'd recommend grabbing a table and staying a while. While a wine list is non-existent (in fact last time I was informed that the waiter with an Italian accent was the wine list), you can get a nice glass of Chianti to start of your Italian meal for $9. Who needs anything fancy anyway right? Next, I would recommend ordering the Caesar salad, and one order is the perfect size to split between two people. I've come to find that Caesar salads have been overdone and most of them can be pretty blah. I don't know what La Bella does, but the dressing has a nice bite (maybe the anchovy paste?), the lettuce is fresh and crispy and the croutons provide just the right amount of crunch. And at $6.95, you can't really beat the price either.

Caesar Salad
Once you've gobbled up you greens, you have the choice to partake in some unusual pizzas or stick with your plain Marinara or White. We have tried the Pollo ala Vodka Pizza more than once and it's definitely a favorite of ours. It comes with grilled chicken, broccoli and cheese covered in a tangy and hearty vodka sauce. We usually order the medium ($18) which gives us plenty and then some we can take home for leftovers. 

Pollo ala Vodka Pizza
With a plethora of other pizza options in the city, I'm not saying run here now, but if you're in the area for a movie or whatever, it's an excellent choice. I'll definitely be back!


La Bella of New York on Urbanspoon