July 1, 2018 |

Destinations: Forcella, NY; Cafe Bottega, Linda’s Pizza

By Denise Greer

Forcella | Brooklyn, NY


The Williamsburg pizzeria serves up Neapolitan pizzas and fried pies along with a full menu of Italian classics. The restaurant went under new ownership in 2015. “We just updated our menu (in April) and added the Local Pizzaiolo. The pizza is made with brisket from local barbecue purveyor Fette Sau, Cipollini onions, provolone and mozzarella, and topped with hot honey. Everyone loves it. People instantly start taking pictures when they see it and rave about how good it is,” says owner Vasyl Dzoba. Other new pies include Amalfi, made with yellow tomatoes, Castelvetrano olives, bufala mozzarella, and basil; the Possilipo with a truffle and artichoke cream sauce, homemade burrata and topped with shaved summer truffles; and the Parmigiana, made with flash-fried dough and topped with sliced eggplant, San Marzano tomato sauce, Parmesan, basil and pesto. Forcella has also updated its cocktails menu to include the Margherita, with tequila, triple sec, fresh lime juice and muddled tomato and basil —and garnished with a skewer of fresh mozzarella, grape tomato, and basil. The Amalfi Breeze is made with fresh lemon juice, house-made raspberry syrup and topped with Prosecco. Meanwhile, the Renaissance is made with gin, Cocchi Americano Bianco and topped with rosemary-infused olive oil.


Café BottegaBirmingham, Alabama

The Italian trattoria has recently been named among The Daily Meal’s “Best Pizza in Every State.” It also has one of Birmingham’s best patios. The fresh seasonal menu offers a variety of snacks, main dishes, sides, pizzas, sandwiches and desserts. Among its spring pizza offerings, the Southern Delight with Louisiana crawfish, Conecuh sausage, ricotta and spring onion was unique. Another seasonal pizza was topped with sweet peppers, chicken, Fontina, arugula and a tomato chutney. Main dishes included orecchiette with chicken meatballs, Swiss chard, garlic and calabrian chili.


Linda’s PizzaJoliet, Illinois

The small carryout and delivery pizzeria has been a staple in the Joliet community since opening in 1981. Linda’s now operates two locations. The shop has a simple menu. Customers pick the size (small to extra large) and number of toppings from more than 20. Garlic and thin crust are also available. A hot item in the region is the Italian Beef Sandwich with pickles, onion, garlic, pepperoncini and pizza sauce.