Sections

It’s a pizza the action for Cucina legend Michael Ayoub

for The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:

Like his pizza, Michael Ayoub’s career as a pizza man has been circular — when he opens his second outpost of Williamsburg pizza spot Fornino this week in Park Slope, he’ll be returning to the space where he first made his mark nearly 20 years ago at Cucina, once the lone high-quality eatery in Park Slope.

This time, though, he’ll be taking on grilled pizza — his “other love.”

“It’s surreal,” said Ayoub, of his return to the former Cucina space. “It’s like putting on an old sweater again.”

These days, both Ayoub and the concept have grown up a little bit.

“As a chef, I really like to challenge myself. Grilled pizza isn’t really done in New York and it’s certainly not done round,” said Ayoub, adding that grilled pizza affords for more delicate toppings, like softer cheeses, that can’t handle the heat of a 1,000-degree wood-fired oven. That is, pizzas like his Gorgonzola with Fior di Latte, figs and arugula ($14).

Fornino really shares only a name and general enthusiasm for pizza with its Williamsburg precursor. Aside from grilled pizza, Fornino Park Slope will feature a much-expanded menu that includes a wide range of pastas, antipasti, entrees and homemade sausages like the chicken apricot and tallegio with broccoli rabe ($15). It’s also a relative behemoth at 165 seats.

“It’s really cucina de la nonna [grandmother’s kitchen],” said Ayoub “The only thing missing is grandma serving it to you.”

Fornino [256 Fifth Ave. between Garfield Place and Carroll Street in Park Slope, (718) 399-8600].

Updated 5:18 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:


Reasonable discourse

Lex from Park Slope says:
" “As a chef, I really like to challenge myself. Grilled pizza isn’t really done in New York and it’s certainly not done round,” said Ayoub"

Mike, I know you've been out of the neighborhood for awhile but you really should know that Bar Toto has been doing grilled pizza for about 8 years. They're round too.
May 11, 2010, 9:23 am
Lawrence Gulotta from Park Slope says:
Bring on the SCIAVATA.
May 26, 2010, 9:57 am
ANTONIO CORDOVA from ECUADOR says:
antonio from quito ecuador.....michael ayoub is my mentor....work for him 20 years ago....now his flavor is in all latin america.....thank michael for all your suport in cuccina restaurant brooklyn...in my restaurants VOODOO LOUNGE...and ONE grill house...your flavor, and school is every day.......god bless you...maybe one day i will see you in new york...to day thanks.... FACEBOOK: ANTONIO CORDOVA MORA
Aug. 8, 2011, 6:17 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: