Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Best Thing I Ever Ate....In Brooklyn

Krescendo Pizza Restaurant & Bar, Boerum Hill, Brooklyn.  Photo Credit: Dominic Perri ( I have to admit, I wasn't a big fan of Brooklyn until last night.
I know, I know...I'm one of those New Yorkers who is guilty of the biggest sin
(sometimes) never leaving the island of Manhattan.

When my longtime friend/amazing chef decided to surprise me with a very 
"out-of-the-way" location for our dinner together, I wasn't instantly excited.
I knew he was up to something; 
He is the one person I have always enjoyed good food with on the highest level.
But he wanted to go all the way out to Brooklyn for pizza?  
"Was he crazy?!" I thought to myself.
I wondered what pizza could be 'that' good that it would be worth getting on the A Train to journey into the middle of nowhere?  And I was in heels for Christ's sake.

But then on an A Train and 20 minutes later (heels still on), 
is where we discovered the holy grail of all Pizza.

Krescendo Brooklyn.  Photo Credit: Elizabeth Lippman (NY Times)

Krescendo on Atlantic Avenue; Boerum Hill, Brooklyn
Photo Credit: Krescendo Brooklyn.

When we first arrived at this little neighborhood restaurant on a quaint block of Atlantic Avenue filled with upscale antique shops and boutiques
I instantly thought - typical nice pizza joint/bar.

The decor was nice, warm and inviting.  There was a beautiful wood-burning pizza oven in the back of the restaurant that was the center focal-point.

Photo Credit: Krescendo Brooklyn.

As we were seated only a few patrons were dining beside us,
 so I was still asking myself why we had come all this way.  

Until I tried my very first bite our one of our incredible appetizers.

Polpette al Forno: heavenly tender meatballs plated with a delicious tomato sauce in it's purest form.  The tomato sauce really made this dish for me. It was by far the best sauce I've EVER tasted and I'm a tomato sauce lover - I couldn't have done any better myself 
(I hate to say it but this was better than what I had when I was in Italy).  
It was fresh and simple to perfection.   
Photo Credit:

 Our 2nd Appetizer - a house special of the day (sadly to announce no photo!!)
Sweet-pea Agnolotti with Braised Short Rib Ragout: This dish took my breath away.  The fresh agnolotti was made with sweet-peas and the pasta just melted in my mouth.  But the best part of all was the mint ricotta.  MINT?!  Just genius.  How had I never discovered this before.  I will never look at ricotta the same way ever again.  
It was insanely good.
All the other ingredients in this dish just merried perfectly together: 
braised short ribs, onions, herbs...
such a hearty beautiful dish of comfort I wish Krescendo would add to their menu permanently!
To say that I was madly in love with this dish would be an understatement.

Pizza #1 - The Cure: This was an excellent choice.  The portion was perfect to share, the crust ridiculous charred to perfection in that incredible wood-burning oven.
Pomodoro and Mozzarella topped with hearty salame, pecorino cheese, and Calabrese chilies.  My favorite part of this pizza was definitely the Calabrese chilies.  They are savory and spicy with the perfect amount of chili heat, thinly slice and rare in the US (usually come directly imported from Italy)!  I've never tasted anything quite like it. 
This pizza is a winner and a must-try!    

"The Cure" Pizza, Krescendo Brooklyn.  Pomodoro, Mozzarella, Salame, Pecorino & Chilies.  Photo Credit:
Pizza #2- Finocchio Flower Power: The Championship winner and rightfully so.
I was told this pizza was praised with a championship award in Naples, Italy for the Caputo World Pizza competition.  And at Krescendo, the gold cup trophy was proudly displayed on the bar of their pizza kitchen.

"Finocchio Flower Power" Pizza, Naples World Pizza Championship winner - Krescendo, Brooklyn NY.  Photo Credit:
The Finocchio is deliciously creamy pecorino and shaved provolone cheeses topped with braised fennel, fennel sausage and fennel fronds.  Again you got the hint of the calabrese chili and the pizza is topped with a delicious olive oil.
Needless to say, this was absolute heaven on a crust! 

Finocchio Flower Power, Krescendo Brooklyn.  Pecorino, Provolone, Braised Fennel, Fennel Sausage. Photo Credit:
And by this time into our dinner...we were surrounded by a packed restaurant with not a single table available.  Interesting.  I'm guessing this place wasn't that typical pizza joint I had originally thought it may be.

But the biggest suprise of the night besides the unexpected food
 was by far personally meeting the famously renowned chef 
and Food Network's The Next Iron Chef contestant - Elizabeth Falkner.
She is the brains (and hands) behind all of the amazing food we ate at Krescendo. 
Incredible what a pastry chef can do with Pizza in New York.

Photo Credit: Krescendo Brooklyn.

Definitely worth a trip back on the A Train (or possibly an entire move of residence) JUST to visit this incredible Italian spot & Chef Falkner once again.
Truth be told, I will never look at Brooklyn the same way ever again.



  1. Hello Jen! FABULOUS blog! Forwarded to my niece JJ who has also traveled extensively and has the same love of food! Georgia xoxoxo

    1. Thanks Georgia!
      You are so sweet, I just love that you enjoyed it as much as you did! Hope JJ does too. Maybe we can go back to Little Italy again for dinner together one night; I am dying to do a blog posting on it!
      xoxo Jen