Sicilian, Neapolitan, Roman. Grilled, charred, blistered: There's an exemplary version of each in New York's sprawling (and oversaturated) pizza market.
Blissfully, two new pizza parlors are reaching beyond the wood-fired oven and back to their owners' personal histories. Pizza fanatics, take note:
Rubirosa The thin-crust pizza at this new entry to Mulberry Street's buzzy scene has thorough pedigree, thanks to owner A.J. Pappalardo's stint at his folks' Staten Island pizzeria. But such standout dishes as rich manicotti ($12) and a terrific lunch-only stromboli ($7) from chef Al Di Meglio fight for attention amid the pizza hype. Another hit: lasagna Napoletana for two ($23), which layers veal-pork-beef meatballs into individual stoneware pans with sheep's-milk ricotta. 235 Mulberry St.; 212-965-0500 or rubirosanyc.com
Donatella Donatella Arpaia's gold-tiled pizza oven clamors for attention, but the menu's salads might win the popularity contest. The chopped vegetable salad ($13) is a crunchy paean to the freshness of broccoli, carrots, radishes and beets, while crispy fennel seed, clove and cinnamon-scented pork-belly croutons top an insalata ricca ($12), comprising bitter greens and anchovy vinaigrette. For a sweet contrast, try Donatella's sfogliatelle, its flaky layers filled with ricotta and orange-blossom-scented cream. 184 Eighth Ave.; 212-493-5150 or donatellanyc.com
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