Keith McNally‘s second attempt at an Italian restaurant just opened up in the Bowery across the street from DBGB. McNally teamed up with famed Nate Appleman to enter the battlefield of New York Pizza. With contenders such as Co., Motorino and Keste Pizza & Vino does New York City really need another upscale Pizzeria? Well the answer to that question is no, but Pulino’s can certainly take Motorino’s spot amongst the best Pizzerias in New York. Pulino’s looks extraordinarily similar to Pastis and Schiller’s Liquor Bar except with a pizza oven in the back. The subway tiles, checkered floor and liquor bottles lining the walls are all apart of McNally’s recipe for success. Its a casual place for regular New Yorkers and trendy enough for Manhattan’s socialites. Its not a big place but that also makes it appear crowded, so crowded that navigating to your table can be a bit of a hassle. There’s a communal table by the bar, several booths and a sea of two to four person tables so Pulino’s really packs patrons in there. Like all of McNally’s restaurants the tables are so close together you often unintentionally eavesdrop on everyone’s conversations and the service is a bit overwhelmed at times. The lunch menu is very simple, it consists of about 7 different pizzas and a variety of simple appetizers ranging from salumi to soups. The pizzas aren’t too pricey as well. The average pie costs around $15 which is slightly cheaper than its competition. In all honesty the pies don’t look too appetizing when they come out. They appear to be very oily as a thick orange layer of oil sits atop of the pie. Also, the pie is cut with a square in the middle and six smaller slices along the crust which makes the pizza a bit cumbersome to eat. But once you taste the pie it makes up for the presentation flaws. The pizza’s crust isn’t too thin nor overly doughy but just right. The sauce is smooth and complements the cheese of the pizza as both aren’t over baring. Of course most will venture to Pulino’s for the scene and the hype that surrounds the restaurant but at least they will be pleasantly surprised with the quality of the food!