Bella Notte

Pizza. It’s such a “New York” thing, am I right? Not that pizza belongs to New York; it’s clearly everywhere you go. Even when I was visiting Brazil some years ago, the pizza there was incredible. Maybe the real root of all of this is that I love pizza. There, I said it. I LOVE PIZZA. I would eat it every time I wanted it if I didn’t also love being a functioning human being. Because if I ate pizza every time I wanted to, let me tell you what would happen: I would gain 50 pounds, never leave my couch (except to grab a few slices) and become a fixture in my living room instead of a functioning human being. Nobody wants that, least of all me.

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You can imagine my excitement when I learned that I was to visit Milkflower as next on my chain of kindness.  I’d heard such good things about these guys and was really excited to try them out.  I swung by one Thursday on my way to rehearsal and met Steven, a gentlemanly ginger who greeted me as I gave him the lowdown.  He seemed genuinely surprised and thankful for what I’m sure was an unexpected treat of a plateful of cookies.  I told him I’d be back for the plate in a few days and went on my merry way.

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I came back, practically salivating and ready to try their pizza.  I’d had recommendations from friends of which pizza to try (the one with Brussels sprouts), but I had a craving with a more classic flavor, so I went with the spicy sopressata with tomato sauce, fresh mozz, fresh basil and honey drizzle.

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OH.   MY.  GOD.

This pizza is easily in the top 5 of all pizzas I’ve had, including the ridiculously good pizza I had in Brazil (they seem to take what we do and make everything better – try the X Tudo at Pao de Queijo).  This pie came as a 6 slice, 14 (?) inch pie that should’ve been shared.  It was so good that I ate three slices while physically there, then ate the remaining three that I took home with me later that night.  Yep, that day, I ate A WHOLE PIZZA.   (it was worth it.)

Beyond the pizza, my experience with the gentlemen of Milkflower was a memorable one, as they are open, friendly, and charming men.  I chatted with Peter, one of the two owners, about the road that led he and his brother Danny, one of the other owners, to owning a pizza shop on Astoria.

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Both born and raised in NJ, Danny has been making pizzas in his uncle’s pizza shop since he was a teen, while Peter had a career in finance before opening up Milkflower.  Both of them had talked about one day opening up a pizza place, then saw that this space opened up.  It wasn’t something either of them were planning on when it happened, but they took the moment and ran with it.

And I’m glad they did! I’ve thought about that pizza many a time and finally went back to get another.  My only issue with going there or getting take out is that I know, without a doubt, that I will eat the whole pizza, by myself, in 6 hours tops.  It’s that good.  I just need to prepare myself and know going in that I’m going to eat an entire pizza, and not feel guilty when I actually do 🙂

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