Lucali's, I like it
Went to Lucali's and I really enjoyed the overall experience. (I did forget to bring along our bottle of wine, and it was too late to buy another - so that was a bummer.) I simply had a cheese and basil pie. I would have liked the center of my pie to be crisper, and I think that the sauce at Difara's still tastes better, having a fuller more complex flavor. (Or maybe that was just salt.) But, honestly, Lucali's is turning out some good pizza and I believe it's on its way to being great. We met Mark, the owner, and he was a very nice guy. I am looking forward to my next trip.
I agree! Mark's a sweetheart (and a babe!). I think the sauce is still too watery and bland, but the crust is divine. If you bring wine next time, know that they do charge a $4 'bottle disposal' fee in lieu of corkage--to cover the garbage bills for disposing of all those glass bottles, or so they say.
Too funny! We were there just last night!
Loved the setting. We didn't think the pizza quite measured up to Nick's in Forest Hills but it was still very good. And the ambiance more than made up for it.
We went by just after they had opened and realized we'd forgotten to pick up a bottle of wine so we ran over to Smith & Vine. When we got back to Lucali's they were almost filled.
We got a table right away and were told that they weren't doing calzones that night. We ordered a pie, half plain, half olive and mushroom. Our server was friendly and professional. After about 10-15 minutes she informed us that our pie was next. A few minutes later she came over and explained that he'd made a mistake and made our pie with half olives and half mushroom instead of half plain. He wanted to make us a new one but we assured her it wasn't necessary and had her bring it over.
We found the center part of the crust more chewy than crispy but the overall flavor was very good.
When we finished my BF went to the restroom and our server stopped by to let us know that the owner refused to let her bring us a check and the pie was comped because he'd made a mistake. I was very surprised and found myself protesting and asking her to please bring me a check. The last thing I wanted to do was take money from a new business owner who obviously knows what customer service is. And it wasn't like he didn't offer to make us a new pie exactly the way we wanted it. It just wasn't very important to us.
Regardless, she wouldn't bring me a check and walked away. In the meantime my BF exits the restroom and the owner stops to ask him how everything was, how did we hear about it, etc. My BF explained that he's in the business and that we'd heard about it through someone else he works with.
When he came back to the table I explained about the comped pie. We ended up leaving what we estimated the bill to be plus a gratuity. We'd already decided we'd return and now I know it will be sooner rather than later because of the great service.
btw- the sauce on a Difara's regular pie is in fact not a sauce at all- dominic uses uncooked san marzano tomatoes for the sauce on the regular pies- the squares have a cooked sauce (with a bit of priscioutto says the master himself). nothing is as delicious as san marzano tomatoes- how can you go wrong... enjoy fb