Hospitality king Danny Meyer makes his entrance into the world of fast-casual pizzas starting this Saturday with the opening of Martina, a spin-off of his popular Roman pizzeria Marta.
Chef Nick Anderer, also the Maialino and Marta chef, has been spearheading the menu of $7 to $12 thin pies, cooking up options like a capricciosa with artichokes, ham, black olives, mushrooms, mozzarella, and a sunny side egg. Dishes such as chicken meatballs and baby arugula salad will also be on the menu.
The restaurant at 198 East 11th Street near Third Avenue, is a counter-service only place that sounds like it will be ambitious about its speed and output. Anderer has been testing the ovens, and last week, he said that he wanted the capacity to make at least 90 pies per hour. Here, like at Meyer’s fast-casual success story Shake Shack, people will pick up their orders via buzzer.
The Union Square Hospitality Group team has been mum about whether it wants Martina to be the pizza version of Shake Shack, but so far, this new location looks like it’s built to be replicated. Anderer tells Grub Street: “People are craving a little more casualness, a quicker pace, places that feel more accessible.”
Stay tuned for photos of the space and more, later this week.