Williamsburg hipsters might have to start buying their skinny jeans one size larger.
La Nonna Pizzeria Trattoria Paninoteca - a fan favorite since it opened its doors in 2007 - has opened a second space. La Nonna Ristorante & Bar, located at 184 Kent Avenue, between North 3rd and 4th Street, is a new sophisticated restaurant from Owner/Executive Chef Cono Morena. Known for his genuine cooking passion and authentic Southern Italian cuisine, Morena is thrilled to be showcasing a refined Italian menu in a spacious, yet relaxed setting near the Williamsburg waterfront.
“La Nonna,” which means grandma in Italian, is named after Morena’s grandmother, tying the restaurant to Morena’s roots. The menu is a marriage of traditional Italian cuisine and Morena's innovative spin on Italian combinations. Guests can start with antipasti like bruschette alle vongole with Massachusetts clams, Serrano ham and garlic aioli on grilled ciabatta bread and Peekytoe crab cakes served with saffron mustard cream sauce and salsa verde-lemongrass. Fresh insalate include cavolo nero Toscano, or Tuscan black kale - which will surely be a hit among the hipsters. There is an array of housemade pasta, from polenta gnocchi served with pork cheeks, hen-of-the-woods mushrooms, crispy shallot and Pecorino sardo to bucatini all’amatriciana with guanciale, tomatoes and Pecorino Romano.
Main courses include pizza, obviously, but more hearty offerings of meat and fish make for a more formal meal. Gilled Ribeye steak with Shishito peppers and Chilean Sea Bass with Rhode Island calamari, cipollini onions, roasted cherry tomatoes and miso toasted bread crumbs are a couple of standouts. La Nonna’s International wine list encompasses over 88 wines (26 - 395/bottle), including a fine selection from Italy. The ristorante also offers beer and a full cocktail list.
Located on the corner of a newly developed courtyard, La Nonna’s 4000 sq. foot space (130 seats) is grand with towering ceilings and expansive windows. Morena’s wife, Anna Morena, who is in charge of the front-of-the-house, as well as the interior design, brings her sincere warmth and hospitality to create a welcoming environment, despite its large size. She uses earthy tones, vintage furniture mixed with newer pieces, and rustic accents, including bronze wired chandeliers, to make the space feel more intimate. She selected beautiful banquet fabric reminiscent of Italian tiles, and hand painted bowls, crafting an ambience filled with Italian authenticity. Dark wood floors and bar (12 bar stools), walls resembling old Italian houses, a large wood communal table (14 seats) next to its wine cellar, plus, large burlap curtains that are perfectly arranged to divide the room for private parties, complete the space. During the warmer months, al fresco dining will be available on its patio.
La Nonna Ristorante & Bar
184 Kent Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11249
Hours of Operation: Tuesday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
Sunday: 3:00pm- 11:00pm