Bocce Union Square Union Square Pavilion Bocce Union Square

Bocce Union Square

Cuisine: Italian / Pizza
Pizza and Italian eats in the heart of Union Square.
Openings: Lunch Tues.-Sun., Dinner nightly, Brunch Sun.
Bocce Union Square, New York, NY

Bocce Union Square Restaurant Review:

About the décor & atmosphere: Smack in the middle of Union Square Park in the Union Square Pavilion (a place that’s existed as multiple incarnations), Bocce Union Square feels like it’s right in the heart of NYC because, well, it is. The seasonal, open-air restaurant is flanked by columns, with a spacious patio out front. As the name implies, there’s a bocce court, but only one which makes it unlikely to snag a spot. It’s a pleasant place to enjoy some outdoor time and people watch.

Likes: Fresh ingredients from the Greenmarket; pepperoni pizza; great outdoor space.
Dislikes: Gets crowded; bocce is too busy to play.

Food & Drinks: The menu is full of the ubiquitous crowd-pleasers that make up many local Italian-ish menus. Calamari is crispy and light, and thin-crust pizzas come topped with fresh mozzarella, green garlic and heirloom tomatoes, or summer eggplant and spicy olive conserva. The pepperoni and pickled chili pie had just the perfect amount of char. Bocce’s snap pea Caesar salad captured the freshness of summer, but the rigatoni with roasted pork was chewy and gloopy. Still, this is a kind of ideal place to savor a frozen Negroni or a cocktail like the Green Market made with tequila, cucumber, vermouth, elderflower and celery. After all, the Greenmarket is within arm’s reach and the menu is at its best when it showcases these fresh products. Dessert options are limited to gelato and zeppole; however, the frozen Negroni slush makes a fine ending to a meal. The Italian-only wine list includes a lovely Sicilian rosé and a juicy Barolo.

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