As of lately, it seems that the girls could live on pizza only if I’d let them. It doesn’t matter the day of the week or the time in the day, when you ask them what they would like to eat, the answer is 90% of the times: pizza (with Shake Shack burgers a close second). That said, at least they do like tomatoes (Little Sous Chef more so than La Petite Wasabi) and not only its processed form. One has to look at the positive in life, I guess.
A couple of days ago we were walking around Atlantic Avenue and we hit one of those panic moments. We were far enough from home that it would be impossible to make it back without some type of hungry/tired tantrum by either one or both of them at unison (or me joining in, for that matter). So what is a mom supposed to do? Well, of course, find a nice pizza joint and grab a pizza for the girls (and a nice ice-cold beer for herself), and worry later if they had eaten the FDA approved Daily Values of veggies, protein and carbs.
I had heard really good comments about Sottocasa Pizzeria and decided to give it a shot, as we were just around the corner. The restaurant is located on the basement level of an old building on the corner of Atlantic Avenue and Smith Street and although it’s a pretty busy corner, the space is intimate and quiet and not dark at all, taking into consideration its location. Just as you enter, you find the bar to your right and a spacious nook to its right where we were able to leave the girls’ scooters. To the left, a big window facing Atlantic Avenue, with a wood booth and a fire place against a whitewashed exposed brick wall. There are a row of tables on this left wall and a communal table opposite it, past the bar.
They also have a garden in the back, past the open kitchen where you can see their wood fired oven, built and shipped from Naples. We didn’t make it to the garden, but it is on our radar now.
The staff was very friendly and they quickly sat us and brought us menus. They don’t have a kids menu, but who needs one when you have a delicious variety of traditional Neapolitan style pizzas? The menu is very simple, but don’t let this fool you: broken into antipasti (which include appetizers and salads), pizze rosse (with a tomato sauce base) and pizze bianche (no tomato sauce), there is something for everyone. As far as drinks go, they have a decent Italian wine list and offer Italian beers, being the Menabrea their “house” beer.
When it comes to pizza, the girls are pretty traditional, so we ordered a pizza Margherita, which some consider one of the only four allowed variations for authentic pizza (I am more of the creative side and love different toppings on mine), and an ice-cold Menabrea lager for me. The pizza came pretty quickly (which is great when you dine with children, as you well know) and it was a good sized pizza with delicious tomatoes and gooey mozzarella. Different from the New York style pizza, this is the type of pizza that you need to eat with a knife and a fork, like Italians (and mayor Bill De Blasio) do, even though it came cut in slices so it would be easier to share. The pizza was fresh and delicious and it paired perfectly with the cold Menabrea. They do not have a dessert menu, but they do have desserts, among them a Nutella pizza. We were so stuffed that we had to pass the chance to try it, but I am pretty sure the girls will want to test it.
There is only one bathroom, to the right past the bar and the communal table. The bathroom is ample and surprisingly bright, although it doesn’t have a changing table.
We really enjoyed the food and the atmosphere and I am pretty sure we will be back for some more pizza… in their backyard next time.
Sottocasa Pizzeria – Boerum Hill
298 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Monday – Thursday: 5:00pm – 10:30pm
Friday: 5:00pm – 11:30pm
Saturday: 12:00pm – 11:30pm
Sunday: 12:00pm – 10:30pm