New York City is definitely not short on supply of pizza, from 99-cent slices that you get at 3:00 AM and immediately regret when you wake up, to high end pizzas that you question why you’re still so hungry for having paid so much for artisan ingredients.
Fortunately for us, newly opened in the Flatiron District is PN Wood Fired Pizza, easily accessible in the Flatiron District that is the best of everything.
The main difference between PN Wood Fired Pizza and every other pizza is their intense dedication to the dough’s flour. Managing Partner Giacomo Baldi, who is also the CEO of Molino Grassi, the leading European manufacturer of organic and specialty flours from Italy, prides himself on the quality and flavor of the flour, which in turn makes for even more excellent pizza.
Most uniquely about this PN is that customers are able to choose the type of flour used for your crust. In additional to customizing your toppings, now you are able to customize your crust. When you realize that the crust literally serves as the foundation of your pizza, you start to wonder how this concept is not already a widespread phenomenon. Together with Chef Giovanni Gurrieri from Sicily, Baldi has created a standout pizza restaurant focusing on only the most high-quality ingredients with an emphasis on simplicity and flavor.
The flours that PN uses are organic and are comprised mainly of ancient grains. They are not refined, so they are higher in fiber and lower in carbs, and they are also not enriched or bromated, and also contain a lower glycemic index, making spikes in blood sugar less likely. The dough is matured for at least 96 hours, allowing the yeast to break down the sugars, which allows to gluten to be softer, fluffier, and also easier for your stomach to digest.
With this newfound knowledge, it was time to put taste to the test.
For our first pizza, we tried the standard margherita pizza with tomato, fresh mozarella, and basil. For our crust, we kindly asked what the recommended flour is, and we went with the Montana flour, an organic Canadian Manitoba mixed with farro and rye, yielding a crust high in protein, sodium and fiber.
I really thought the flour speech was all hype, but to my surprise I immediately convince as I took the first bite. The crust was soft and fluffy on the inside, while remaining crispy and light on the outside, and yet there was no excessive crumbs falling all over the plate and onto your lap. Crispy and soft, the best of both worlds.
The second pizza we ordered the bianche truffle pizza with artichoke and black truffle puree with fresh mozzarella, raw tuscan sheep milk cheese, and pancetta. As expected, the quality of the dough further elevated the amazing flavors of the toppings.
In addition to the life-changing pizza, PN also serves other Italian dishes with frequently changing specials. To start, we tasted a plate of parmesan aged for 20 months, followed by crostini all’Elbana, crostinis with proscuitto de parma, mozzarella buffala, and anchovies.
For heftier appetizers that are also easy to share are the tender polpette tartufo truffle meatballs generously coated with cheese and sauce. Another standout dish was the grilled octopus all’inferno. The octopus is cooked without using water, but rather it is grilled in chili oil with garlic and rosemary, served with harissa sauce and a white kidney bean puree.
For main entrees, the grilled eggplant parmesan is one of their signature dishes. The eggplant is not breaded or fried, but is surrounded by heaps of cheese and sauce. One of my favorite dishes of the night was the tagliatelle pasta with a light trapanese sauce and topped with pecorino cheese. On our next visit, I hope to try the gnocchi with zucchini pesto!
Despite our stomachs exploding beyond capacity, we ended our amazing meal with desserts. The desserts are created by pastry chef and general manager, Vivian Loren, putting innovative twists to traditional Italian flavors. We loved the Semifreddo with pretzels and caramel peanut butter, satisfyingly creamy and sweet. For a milder option, opt for the pistachio soft cake with a touch of honey and basil.
Of course, what better to go with your meal than cocktails and wine. The bar offers light cocktails including the Elderflower Spritz and Negronis, and you can never go wrong with any of the wines from their extensive list of Italian wines.
We had an educational first visit to PN and now have an appreciation for the flour of our pizza dough. However, it will take a few more visits for us to understand it all. Fortunately for guests of the restaurants, the flour bags are mounted on the wall along with explanations of the qualities and benefits of each variety.
To get you started, here is a list of a few of their flour offerings:
- Kronos, the durum. Organic Kronos semolina and organic stone ground type 1, a perfect balance for a golden crust full of flavor. Packed with fiber and with an intense smell of wheat.
- Einkorn, the oldest. Einkorn or Monococcum or farro piccolo, heritage spelt, is packed with high levels of fatty acids, phosphorus, potassium, pyridoxine, and beta-carotene. Nutty with hints of hay.
- Multigrain, the complete. Organic Manitoba flour blended with organic rye—rich in lysine, organic barley, high in Beta Glucan, organic rice, high in the level of digestible carbohydrates, and organic oats and rich in fiber. It has a unique texture and lightness, with a full-flavored taste.
- Montana, Canada meets farro.Organic Canadian Manitoba mixed with farro and rye. The unique flavor of this blend will blow you away. High in protein, sodium and fiber. Distinctive malty flavor with notes of tea leaves.
- Kamut, the heritage durum. Kamut or Khorasan wheat is a hard durum wheat, packed with high proteins, unsaturated fatty acid, selenium, zinc, magnesium and minerals. This exclusive flour delivers a full buttery taste and nutty mouthwatering finish.
- Miracolo, the Italian heritage soft wheat. Grano del Miracolo is a heritage ancient grain cultivated in the Province of Parma, Italy, by Molino Grassi. It is rich in minerals, phosphorus, iron and antioxidants. The gluten is more digestible than any other wheat. A soft wheat flour with a distinctive, fragrant and almost sweet flavor profile.
- Organic stone ground type 1, our main player. Italian organic wheat, stone ground. Packed with minerals and fibers, rich in protein, fiber, wheat germ and bran. Nutty notes and a rich flavour.
- Organic whole wheat flour, the complete. Our organic whole wheat flour is packed with minerals, fiber and is low in carbohydrates, and includes the bran coat and germ. The glycemic index of this flour is the lower among all the other flours. Nutty character with a finish notes of hay.
Visit PN Wood Fired Pizza and change your views on pizza dough forever!
Photos by Socially Superlative and via PN Wood Fired Pizza
PN Wood Fired Pizza
2 W. 28th Street