It was such an honor to have been asked to host a special tasting menu for fellow bloggers and special friends of mine, this past Wednesday at Capizzi Pizza and Wine Bar in mid-town Manhattan. I was so excited, even though I knew we were scheduled to have yet another snow-storm, actually a blizzard. How could I have ever doubted my fellow Adventurista’s spirits? Blinding snow, all 12 lovely ladies braved the weather and met me at Capizzi Pizza and Wine Bar. This was the beginning of what would turn out to be a fabulous, amazing , moody, snowy night amongst friends, old and new and the most delicious Italian food . First, a little biography about Capizzi Pizza and Wine Bar and owner Joseph Calcagno.
Capizzi is a pizzeria in Hell’s Kitchen that’s serving up cozy comfort food reminiscent of your Italian grandmother’s.
Don’t have an Italian grandmother? Well, you’ll feel like you do when you visit this old-fashioned eatery for a seven-course dinner.
It’s the brainchild of owner Joseph Calcagno: an Italian American who grew up working in the kitchens of his parents’ Brooklyn pizza parlors. They, in turn, had grown up in the kitchens of their Italian born parents—in a town, unsurprisingly, named Capizzi. “As a small child, I worked by my father’s and grandfather’s side in their pizza shops and gardens, and I too have developed a passion and love for the art of food,” owner Joseph Calcagno writes. “There is a great deal of pleasure that comes with serving something really special.
In other words—pizza’s a tradition in the Calcagno family, and we haven’t met many who can make it better.
They know that crusts should be thin, tender and crisp—and that nothing compares to a wood-burning oven. And they’re adamant on importing the best ingredients from Italy every single week. Think: spicy pepperoni, sweet red peppers and decadent prosciutto di parma.
When you enter inside this lovely little gem, the atmosphere is very romantic, yet it’s a place I could bring my family to as well. The ladies and I, immediately felt at home, relaxed and the dim lights and jazzy music set the Winters night just perfect for all of us.
Joe, the owner of Capizzi Pizza and Wine Bar, went all out for the ladies and I. We had a table that was intimate and laden with candles, wonderful setting and bottles of red wine. Giggling , the anticipation was high to taste the food, which consisted of an elaborate tasting menu.
3 courses of appetizers -6 plates of each to share: Sicilian string bean salad, Mozzarella di Bufala Salads from Campagna, The Antipasto – An assorted array of Italian Meats, Olives, Cheeses and Pickled Vegetables
3 specialty gourmet pizzas -Pizza Nonna with Anchovies & Garlic, Asparagus Special with Formaggi, roasted Asparagus,sliced tomatoes,truffle oil and toasted pine-nuts…Bianca Pizza (no sauce) with Ricotta, Mozzarella,Pecorino and Olive Oil.
4 trays of assorted homemade desserts Tiramisu, Cannolis and Panna Cotta
The pride these guys take in their food is outstanding the chef came out to ask us what we thought of the food and was happy to discuss where the ingredients were from and his own background with us. The waiter was also very attentive and excellent. Pizza is thin, and everything is unbelievably fresh. Home dried and hand crushed oregano and peppers are in view all over the restaurant. Everything, and I mean everything is fresh, did I say this already? This translates in every single bite you eat, all the ladies agreed it was some of the best pizzas they have ever eaten. When our fabulous waiter Lello, who also is the pastry chef, brought out the trays of dessert for us, our mouths dropped. They looked so fabulous and tasted like heaven. I could taste every hand-made ingredient in it, we requested a second tray.
Each course was served with a different selection of red wine. Below were our choices.
I urge every one who lives or is visiting New York City to head over to Capizzi Pizza and Wine Bar. On a romantic date, with friends, family it is perfect for all three and very kid- friendly. The food is superb and I assure you, you won’t be disappointed. The ladies and I weren’t. Let Joe know you read about them on The Adventurista!
NOTE: Capizzi does not accept credit cards.
547 9th Avenue
New York, NY, 10018