New York’s hottest new pizzeria is an old-school kind of joint with deep Brooklyn roots. Lucali’s in Carroll Gardens has equipment from the departed Leonardo’s, sausage from Esposito Pork Store, and an owner whose pizza god is Domenico DeMarco of hound mecca DiFara. ” I think we have a winner here!” exults bobjbkln.
The pie at Lucali’s, which opened in October and is already drawing crowds, is thin but not super-thin, made with care and attention to craft, and baked in a wood-and-gas-fired brick oven. “The crust is the perfect combo of chew and char, the ingredients first rate,” says missmasala. CTownFeedR reports a flavorful crust, tasty sauce, a stellar cheese combination of fresh mozzarella and grated grana padano, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil at the end.
Although chef-owner Mark Iacono is inspired by DeMarco, his pie has its own personality. “The pizza is not like DiFara’s,” observes bobjbkln. “It’s brick oven, and the crust is somewhat thicker. The cheese is more chewy than DiFara’s. In all, the pizza reminded me more of Totonno’s than DiFara’s, but it was certainly very good.”
Iacono is still getting to know his oven and its quirks. Some complain of overly charred pizzas, others of soggy, underdone ones–but if it doesn’t come out right, he’ll cheerfully make a new one.
Besides the pizza, hounds dig the vibe: low lighting, Caruso on the jukebox, and intoxicating wood smoke aromas. “Still working out the kinks, true, but all the elements are there,” writes sadie. “This place should succeed. He’s got the passion and the pizza–the rest is up to us.”
Lucali’s Pizza [Carroll Gardens]
575 Henry St., between Carroll and 1st Pl., Brooklyn
DiFara Pizzeria [Midwood]
1424 Ave. J, at E. 14th St., Brooklyn
Totonno Pizzeria Napolitano [Coney Island]
1524 Neptune Ave., between W. 15th and 16th Sts., Brooklyn