Pie in the Sky

Sottocasa takes pizza to the sweet side
Sottocasa Pizzeria Slide Show
Chocolate shows its love for pizza in the Nutella pizza

Luca Arrigoni came to New York with stars in his eyes about performing in musical theater. What he got instead was a pizza oven that brushed the stars.

When Arrigoni (a Kesté alum) tried to install his imported two-ton pizza oven at Sottocasa, his new Boerum Hill pizzeria, the only way in was up and over the three-story building by crane (see a video here).

The oven now sits on a concrete-floored hut built at the back of the building because the grizzled wooden floors of the restaurant proper couldn't support the oven's staggering weight.

Pizzas ($9 to $19) are classic Neapolitan, undersized to an American eye, nimble on the cheese and with a lightly wet center.

But our two favorites stray from the Naples-endorsed formula. Instead of exposing the cherry tomatoes, arugula, buffalo mozzarella and prosciutto of the Fresca ($19) to the withering 1,000-degree heat of the wood-fired oven, Arrigoni tucks the ingredients safely inside the crust.

For dessert, the Nutella pizza ($10) receives the same treatment. The dough is sliced horizontally, dusted with toasted almonds and stuffed with imported Italian Nutella (less sweet than the American version). That means that each bite yields a warm-bread-molten-chocolate-warm-bread sandwich (click here to see a slide show of the entire process).

Sottocasa Pizzeria, 298 Atlantic Ave. (at Smith St.), Brooklyn: 718-852-8758 or sottocasanyc.com

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    Luca Arrigoni carefully pats out a circle of dough.

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    Arrigoni carefully shepherds the dough into the 1000 degree oven.

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    The dough puffs up and is completely cooked within 90 seconds to two minutes.

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    The resulting pizza puff is cut open with scissors.

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    Nutella is spread liberally on the dough (Yes, that's a 10 pound jar of Nutella in the background).

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    The Nutella pizza is cut into slices and topped with powdered sugar and sliced almonds.

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    The finished product--make sure to leave room!

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    The Regginella pizza ($15) is a simple mix of cherry tomatoes, fresh buffalo mozzarella and basil.

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    The pizza oven's specially-built hut can be seen from the backyard.

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    Sottocasa Pizzeria is located on Atlantic Avenue in Boerum Hill.

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Sottocasa Pizzeria 298 Atlantic Ave. New York NY 11201 718-852-8758
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