Here’s the secret about Brunetti Pizza: Yes, they make a mean Neapolitan-style pie in the beautiful wood-fired oven named “Bella.” But the team here knows a good cocktail as well as a perfect crust.
In fact, they may well be one of the (if not the) only pizza places with a proper happy hour (Thursdays, 4 to 7 p.m.) and a Meet the Winemaker series because their wine list, too, is excellent — where else are you going to find Lacryma Cristi by the glass, let alone in a bottle or single-vineyard Falanghina? Or the best Italian-sourced beer list this side of Eataly’s Birreria?
Cocktails, too, get the boot treatment, sourcing many of their spirits, vermouth and liqueurs from Italy, too. And sometimes, pulling the kitchen and the shaker together create some pretty spectacular palate-popping things.
“We make an amazing and very popular Calabrian pepper oil at Brunetti’s Pizza Westhampton Beach. It was only a matter of time before we made a cocktail [with it],” says co-owner and general manager Daniel Armyn.
The gin at the source of this piquant martini is Elena London Dry-style, a Piedmont made spirit from the family behind the venerable Vietti wines, using botanicals sourced from that region’s Alpine foothills. A sweet red Italian vermouth comes next and then a complementary slender spike of the house-made Calabrian pepper oil. It’s herby, it’s a little sweet, it’s a little spicy — and sipped alongside one of their perfect pizzas, it’s a delight.
All those Calabrese shake the cocktail like a’crazy. Or at least here, they do.
- 2 oz London Dry-style Italian gin
- 2 oz sweet Italian vermouth
- splash Calabrian pepper oil
- dried Calabrian pepper for garnish
- Pour gin and vermouth into a mixing glass with ice.
- Stir until well-chilled and to allow the ice to dilute a bit, about 30 seconds.
- Strain into a martini glass and garnish with the Calabrian chili pepper. Cin-cin!