Lady’s in Downtown Brooklyn Focuses on Handmade Fresh Pasta, Pizza

December 24, 2016 2:07 am Last Updated: March 8, 2018 5:23 pm

Located near the BAM (Brooklyn Academy of Music) and Barclays Center, Lady’s, which seats 100, brings an aesthetic designed by James Beard Award-nominated designers Matthew Maddy and Nico Arze, with black leather booths, an open kitchen, and many handmade details, such as hand-cast blue concrete tiles and cabinets. The designers’ previous projects include Lilia, No. 7, Colonia Verde, Grand Army, and Russ & Daughters Cafe, among others.

The menu focuses on pasta and pizza, which likewise have a handmade ethos.

The pastas are made fresh in-house. “It’s a tremendous amount of labor, but there’s no alternative,” said chef Aaron Harsha, who soaked up his pasta-making knowledge at Marea, where he worked for four years.

Cappelletti. (Courtesy of Lady's)
Cappelletti. (Courtesy of Lady’s)

The pasta dishes are seasonal, currently including cappelletti with ricotta, soppressata ragù, and a confit of tomatoes; and casoncele with short ribs, roasted sunchokes, and a bone marrow bordelaise. A vegetarian pasta dish is the chestnut campanelle with butternut squash and wild mushrooms.

“The thing with pasta is that if you do it right, even something as simple as that [campanelle dish] can be pretty outstanding,” Harsha said.

Gluten-free noodles are available for substitution, except for the filled pastas.

Neapolitan pizzas include a pie with honey butter, Calabrian chilies, and sea salt; a Brussels sprouts pizza with Italian sausage and ricotta; and a classic Margherita. There’s also Harsha’s version of a clam pie, but with cockles and lardo iberico (essentially fat from Spanish pigs, cured with fennel and dry oregano). “You put it on a hot pizza and it just starts to melt away into it,” Harsha said.

Kathryn Weatherup, who studied under legendary bartender Sasha Petraske, heads up the bar program, with a focus on amari.

572 Fulton St. (between Rockwell Place & Hudson Avenue)