Perfect for: A beer and pizza with mates after roaming the graffiti-filled streets of Bushwick
Price range: $$ Not bad
My rating: 8.5/10
Food: 9/10 Service: 7.5/10 Ambience: 9/10
Widely touted as New York's best pizza, you'll find Roberta's tucked away in a lesser known neighbourhood in Brooklyn, and one of my favourites, called Bushwick. Bushwick is probably only known for Roberta's - your average Manhattanite has probably taken the L train to the Morgan Ave, stepped out of the station and walked a block to wait in line for the famed prize at this hipster joint, but nothing else.
It's not just brilliant to those from outside of Bushwick - the locals love it too. The hipster dude that runs Mary Meyer, a boutique / vintage store across the road from Roberta's said to me "it's pretty much where all the Bushwick-ers go for all their meals". (This was a somewhat alarming statement - I mean, all their meals? But then I remembered that this was America and let it go.)
So I came here after a full morning of exploring the outdoor gallery space that is Bushwick itself, and was feeling pretty peckish at 3pm on a Saturday. Luckily, because it was such an obscure time, there was no wait for me and my lunch companion. But inside the large space, it was still packed at such a time - it felt like we got the last free table. And it was a pretty good table too - outside in the courtyard, next to the heater.
This isn't one of those hipster blogs where I shy away from the most typical order - OF COURSE I'm ordering a pizza. I get the Speckenwolf (mozzarella, speck, mushroom, onion, oregano) because I'm a fan of all those things listed, and my lunch companion gets the roasted carrot salad with smoked ricotta and radish. We're sharing people, so we share.
Speckenwolf (mozzarella, speck, mushroom, onion, oregano)
The pizza was delicious - you really can't go wrong with any of them. The base is thin and crisp - but not too thin that you've got nothing to chew on. The topping was also perfect - not too scant and not too generous. I sound like I'm drinking the kool-aid, but really it was quite perfect. The only thing I would've changed was the speed at which I ate my pizza - I would've preferred it to be warm the whole time, but that's really my own fault isn't it?
Roasted carrots with smoked ricotta and radish
The carrots were also pretty good. I am typically not a huge fan of carrots, but these were highly recommended by my fellow exploring partner-in-crime, so I had to give them a go. Honestly, they were pretty delicious with the smoked ricotta, and the presentation was definitely ace. If it were up to me, I would've added a bit of sweetness perhaps in the form of a jus, just to wake it up a little bit more.
I thought the ambience was fantastic - it's always fun when there's plenty of people around to liven up the place but you can still hear your own conversations. The heated courtyard setting was wonderful as we got the natural light without freezing our mitts off, and it made it a lot more relaxed and casual which perfectly matches the feel of the menu.
The service was more so-so, it wasn't very streamlined and we did have to wait a while to order drinks, to order food, and to get the check. Granted they were quite busy, but... aren't they always this busy?
The bill ran to no more than $30 per person including drinks, tax and tip. For a damn good meal. But when you visit, make sure you do more than just visit Roberta's - there are lots of amazing streetart all around Bushwick not to mention great thrift stores and a very interesting community of Central and South Americans so you're bound to find some delicious and cheap tacos if you're still feeling peckish after your pizza.
Meal: Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner
Address: 261 Moore St, Brooklyn, NY 11206