Bocce Brings Communal Space + Shareable Plates to Union Square Park
If you haven't had the chance to taste Italian hand-tossed pizzas or try your hand at a game of bocce, you are missing out on one of Union Square's buzziest new restaurants! This summer, the community welcomed Bocce Union Square, a new eatery in Union Square Park's historic pavilion. With shareable plates and outdoor games, this open-air eatery is about to become your go-to summer hang-out. Here are five things you need to know about Bocce Union Square:
1. The Buzz
In the few months that Bocce Union Square has been open, the neighborhood restaurant has brought Union Square positive attention from the press, including features in the New York Times, Eater NY, the New York Post, and more. Bocce has also been the subject of famed Instagram foodie accounts like Timeout New York and Food Baby NY.
2. The Food
This al fresco eatery serves crazy-good pizza from executive chef Tim Meyers and pizza consultant Anthony Falco, both vets from Brooklyn's famed Roberta's Pizza. Bocce is also serving up shared plates perfect for big groups, like the crowd favorite "Bocce Bread", a puffed-up, tear-able pizza dough served with whipped ricotta and olive oil. With your bites, sip on refreshing drinks like a classic Apperol Spritz or a frozen Negroni Slush.
3. THE SPACE
Under managing partner Jason Leeds, the pavilion space has undergone a top-to-bottom redesign, including entirely re-done kitchen and bathroom spaces, a re-imagined Imperial Danby granite bar, new shutter windows, awnings, lighting, and furniture, and not to mention the installation of the outdoor bocce court and court-side bar. A large communal table in the center of the space paired with Bocce's shareable menu makes the restaurant a real community watering hole in the heart of the neighborhood.
5. The INGREDIENTS
Inspired by the restaurant's proximity to the Union Square Greenmarket, Chef Meyers' menu highlights fresh herbs and produce from local farms that sell regularly right out front of the restaurant on the North Plaza. One of Bocce's bestselling drinks gets its name from its neighbor - the "Greenmarket" cocktail features cucumber, elderflower, and celery from - you guessed it - the Greenmarket.
4. The Community Programs
Bocce Union Square is already taking initiative to become a valued partner to the neighborhood. In addition to their work supporting the Union Square Greenmarket through frequent fundraisers and community gatherings, Bocce hosts a number of free events that the community is encouraged to attend. Join them every Monday morning at 8 AM for "Mindful Mondays", a weekly event that features yoga + barre classes taught by Union Square fitness studios, plus after-class snacks from Greenmarket purveyors. If yoga's not your thing, bring a group and try your hand at a game of bocce on the outdoor court any day of the week.