Volume 77 / Number 51 - May 21 - 27, 2008
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since
1933


A Salute to Union Square
A special Villager supplement

Villager photos by Nick Brooks

Above, both day and night, long lines stretch outside the Artichoke pizzeria on E. 14th St. Below, slinging slices to eager customers.

Lines from Artichoke Pizza are choking E. 14th St.

By Joy Wiltermuth

“Everyone and their mamma” has been talking about Artichoke Basille’s Pizza & Brewery, wrote Jen “The Gijibej” D. in a post on Yelp.com.

Since its opening in March, the popular new East Village pizza joint has also garnered mentions in GQ and New York magazine. Not surprisingly, it also made the pages of the Washington Square News, New York University’s undergraduate newspaper. And, again, not surprisingly, there is even a You Tube video of action at the hot new pizza place. Many of the reports have raved about the pies — and also the line to get in, as well as the fact that they are waiting for the establishment to get a liquor license.

Pizzaiolo Francis Garcia and his first cousin Sal Basille own the restaurant. They hail from Staten Island and toil away in the kitchen.

“We work really hard and make the pizzas ourselves. The line has been real long.” Basille said. “We’ve been doing this all our lives, since we were kids.”

They put out a square Sicilian pie, named “Dominick,” after their grandfather. “A big influence in our lives,” Basille noted.

There is a round Neapolitan — and then the adored, artichoke-spinach pie. A lesser-known fourth exists, the burnt-anchovy, but is only available to go.

“You like pizza? Come and see us,” Basille said.

Slices are modestly priced, going for $2.50 to $3.50. A whole pizza runs $12 to $20. The pizzeria is at 328 E. 14th St., near First Ave. Come prepared to wait.

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