This November, the team from King Street champion Charlie Bird will open a new restaurant in the former Toby's Public House space on the corner of Kenmare and Mulberry in Little Italy. Pizza will be served here, but chef Ryan Hardy is quick to note that this is not a pizzeria, proper — pies are just one section of the menu. Like Charlie Bird, wine is a big part of the equation here, but the list will be a bit tighter and the selection will be different than what's offered at its sibling. Here are 10 important facts to know about this as-yet-unnamed new restaurant from sommelier/restaurateurs Robert Bohr and Grant Reynolds, and chef Ryan Hardy:
1) The kitchen will feature two wood-burning ovens designed by Italian star Stefano Ferrara. One will be used for pizzas, and the other will cook the meat and vegetable dishes.
2) Hardy will be working with Tim Caspare, a veteran of San Francisco's acclaimed Quince and Cotogna, in the kitchen. At Cotogna, the chef used a wood-fired oven similar to what the set-up will be like in the new kitchen.
3) The dining room will be a touch smaller than Charlie Bird, with about 50 seats inside and 12 outside. The space will also include some seats at the edge of the kitchen for solo diners and couples.
4) Hardy and Caspare plan to cook things like porchetta, chickens, game birds, and slabs of cote de boeuf for two in that fancy Ferrara oven.
5) And just like at The Bird, a few fresh pastas will also be available, as well as crudo and fritti.
6) The pizzas will be similar in form to Neapolitan-style pies, but Hardy and his crew are not attempting to recreate Naples here. The chef notes: "We're not Italian. We are food inspired by Italy." Expect pies topped with seasonal vegetables and housemade mozzarella. Hand-pulled burrata might also come into play.
7) Charlie Bird's sommelier Grant Reynolds is working here as wine director and co-partner. Reynolds says he plans to serve "wines that we love that we think are drinking great now; wines that have some age on them." That might mean "reds that are 10 to 15 years old," and Reynolds explains that "there will be a focus on France and Italy."
8) Just like The Bird, this restaurant will use Zalto glassware. Robert Bohr also notes: "We're focusing even more so on temperature, keeping service standards really high."
9) A small brewery in Long Island City is making a beer especially for the restaurant. Bohr describes this beer as "a very clean, low-alochol kolsch."
10) The team has a long list of potential names, but nothing's nailed down yet. If everything goes according to plan, the new restaurant will open in late November.