27 May We are open! Welcome to an Unregular Pizza World
The global pandemic hit the city hard and for a lot of restaurateurs it has meant disaster and failure. For Gabriele Lamonaca (31), a young pizza chef from Rome (Italy), who has been a New York resident for the past 13 years, it has meant the realization of a dream which found its real path rooted in a harsh lockdown.
The pizzaiolo’s Roman-style pizzeria opened its doors to the public on Tuesday, May 18th 2021. The name of the pizzeria, borrowed from his extremely popular Instagram account (@unregularpizza), reflects the curious concept: “Unregular Pizza”, pizza for irregular times.
In fact, Gabriele Lamonaca began bartering his home made pizzas in exchange for international delicacies during the lockdown, the pizzas became extremely popular when he posted them on his Instagram profile and the bartering concept became a way to try home made foods while testing his own product. Extrapolating from an ancient tradition which springs from necessity, this pizzeria is the first shop in NYC (and possibly the world) to offer one barter a day in exchange for any food or drink creation New Yorkers feel like bartering.
Gabriele teamed up with pastry chef and master pizzaiolo: Salvatore Gagliardo (43) who moved from Sicily to New York with his whole family 6 years ago. This duo conceived the unique idea of serving Roman style 72h leavened squared pizzas in a unique fashion, giving their creations important twists. In fact, in this pizza shop, you will never ever find the so-called “regular slice”. Even the simplest margherita presents three final toppings that add a flavorful, yet a somehow classic and intense taste: pecorino romano DOP, parmigiano reggiano and homemade garlic infused EVOO.
The mouth-watering menu offers a variety of Burrapizzas which feature a whole burrata on one squared slice, here are some examples:
- Unregular Amatriciana: tomato sauce, guanciale, one whole burrata, cacio and pepe sauce (a cream made with pecorino romano DOP) and bucatini crunch (boiled and fried crumbled bucatini)
- Pugliese: broccoli rabe sauce, sweet Italian sausage, one whole burrata, sun-dried tomato paste and orecchiette crunch (boiled and fried crumbled orecchiette)
- Cafonata: tomato sauce, pepperoni, spicy hot honey, one whole burrata topped with ‘nduja sauce (a cream made with Calabrese ‘nduja and tomato paste)
Other pizzas (that don’t carry a whole burrata on top of a single slice) instead present interesting propositions such as:
- Unregular Mushroom: mixed mushrooms, mozzarella and cacio e pepe sauce (a cream made with pecorino romano DOP)
- Delicatissima: cherry tomato confit, mozzarella, pancetta and red wine reduction sauce
- Bufalina Chicken: mozzarella di bufala or stracciatella, all natural fried chicken (breaded with corn flakes), buffalo sauce and chives
- Unregular Vegana: tomato sauce, cherry tomato confit, asparagus tips and asparagus cream
See the full menu here.
The unexpected ingredients on all the pizzas hint at the chefs’ madness and creativity, but the menu doesn’t stop at pizza and to satisfy all sorts of Italian food loving palates, Gabriele and Salvatore have included a variety of lasagnas (one made with Bronte imported pistachios), Sicilian eggplant rollatini (a revisitation of Sicilian staple eggplant parmigiana) and meatballs made with a special guanciale sauce.
The beverage choices are narrowed down to fresh juices made on the premise, these are infusions of peach and ginger, lemon and basil and orange turmeric, just to name a few.
With a funky and pop fluo-colored 90’s-inspired interior and a neon light logo hanging in the back of the room, the small shop situated in the heart of Union Square catches the eye of all passerbys. To make it all more interesting, the massive pizza offer is displayed in an open glass case on a carrara marble-topped counter that plays with geometrical pattern themes which mix in a playful continuum all the way into the floor. Everything in this extravagant gem flows well into an explosion of colors which is accompanied by the beats of nostalgic 90’s tunes… Unregular Pizza is a playful way to eat excellent and irregular Roman-style pizza, a lighthearted and delightful invitation to be happy, an invitation so longed for during these unprecedented times that it cannot be refused.