Pizza and beer are the perfect thing to liven up a college study session, until they become the norm, and eventually you're the one delivering the pies and sixers. For grub from a guy whose study aids were the study, hit Stella, opening tomorrow.
Stella's the result of a series of field trips Steven Starr took to the most revered pizzerias in NY and nearby New Haven (as well as LA & Phoenix), after which he systematically chose a mix of his favorite styles, toppings & baking techniques, and blended them to concoct Neapolitan/NY hybrid wood-fired pies that'll be served amidst a similarly hybrid interior, where industrial elements (concrete floor, exposed steel beams) and Italian accents (wall mural of Venice, walls lined w/ Chianti bottles & postcards of Pisa), surround a mix of slate-top tables & family-style setups made of reclaimed planks from Coney Island's boardwalk -- just like the Cyclone! Stella's slingin' a dozen combo options to top thin, crispy bottom crust/flaky, slightly bubbled outer crust pies, including the traditional trifecta of the Marinara (San Marzano tomato/oregano/garlic), Margherita, and Bianca, whose mix of buffalo mozzarella, fontina & taleggio battles the Quatro Formaggi for title of the cheesiest, although Celine Dion's lawyers have yet to weigh in. Beyond basics is a sweet fennel sausage, hot pepper, tomato & basil; the Vongole with clams, guanciale (Italian cheek bacon) & broccoli rabe; the San Daniele w/ prosciutto, smoked mozzarella & arugula; and the Tartufo with black truffle, fontina cheese, and egg -- which you'll have on your face when the joint's name inspires you to bust out your Brando impression.
Stella's also dishing up antipasti like octopus & calamari, plus a selection of cured meats including San Daniele Prosciutto, hot coppa, and sopressata. You can boozily wash it all down with a cold bottle of Lager, Moretti, or Lagunitas IPA, as you ignore the fact that, despite the Heat Wave bag they're in, those cheese & garlic sticks are getting colder by the minute.