You’ve probably heard of Roberta’s by now or at least seen their pre-made frozen pies in your local freezer section. But this bicoastal pizza empire got its start at this laidback location in Bushwick. Although the space looks like a cold, hard, shipping crate from the outside, it’s got the comforts of a ski lodge or a very large sauna filled with string lights, picnic tables, and a giant pizza oven on the inside. And they have nearly twice as much seating on their giant patio as they do in the actual restaurant. The outdoor space has its own bar and the atmosphere feels like a park where everyone eats the same, excellent Neapolitan-style pizza.
Since our first trip here in 2008, much has changed, and yet everything is exactly the same. The food continues to be outstanding. Not only are the imaginative pizzas that perfect balance of puffy, chewy, and charred, but the pastas, the vegetables, the meats, the beer selection, it all just seems to get better and better. Roberta’s is a restaurant for serious food people who don’t take their food so seriously.
A classic Roberta’s starter, they cure a mean duck bacon. Order it, and all the other cured meats. Also, get their bread and butter while you’re at it. They make their own butter (obviously), and it’s worth $7..
A simple salad of crisp romaine lettuce with breadcrumbs, dill, mint and pecorino. There’s not much to it, but somehow, it’s the most perfect romaine salad you’ll ever eat.
If ever there was a reason to trek to Bushwick for lunch, it’s for the Roberta’s cheeseburger. This is a great hamburger, the kind that oozes meat juice all over your hands. Also, something about the fact that it’s hard to get makes it taste better.
The pastas change constantly, but rest assured that whatever you get will deliver the goods. We went recently and ate a pasta with clams and garlic that was excellent, and also a garganelli with veal that was out of this world. Pictured below, the orecchiette with pig’s head ragu. If it’s on the menu, order it.
This is the one pizza you absolutely must order when dining for the first time at Roberta’s. It’s sweet, smokey, spicy, and cheesy all at the same time with tomato, mozzarella, sopressata, chili, and honey. Get some.
A delicious pizza with mozzarella, arugula, lemon, and Parmigiano. A pizza piled high with greens means it’s healthy, right?
One of the best pies we’ve eaten anywhere. Tomato, mozzarella, double garlic, mushrooms, jalapeños, and sopressata picante all combine for what tastes like the best supreme pizza ever. Those jalapeños make it. An absolute must order, even if you’re scared of spicy.
It’s easy to get caught up in all the pizza, but don’t sleep on the calzone if you see it on the menu.
Roberta’s does good brunch, too. There are plenty of simple, yet very deliciously executed egg dishes, and of course, breakfast pizza.
Save room. The chocolate chip cookies are excellent, as are the sticky buns.