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Closed for Business: Brooklyn Central Pizza, 289 Fifth Avenue

Some sad news for brick oven pizza lovers: Brooklyn Central, the Neapolitan pizzeria that opened on Fifth Avenue between First and Second Streets in October 2012, has shut down. The windows have been papered over and the phone has been disconnected. Many thanks to the several tipsters who reached out to let me know, and for reader Gabo for forwarding the above photo.

Brooklyn Central opened with a fair amount of fanfare, namely because of their custom-built Stefano Ferrara pizza oven and the fact that the two owners, Naples-born Roberto Patriarca and Matt Hyland, were both veterans of Boerum Hill's renowned Sottocasa. Hyland left just six weeks after its opening (he's since opened Clinton Hill's super-popular pizzeria Emily), but the closure is still a bit surprising because it had a reputation for very good pizza and it always seemed to have a fair amount of diners inside. And aside from Franny's and Giuseppina's, there aren't many other places in the area to get a solid and authentic Neapolitan pizza.

That said, there are a few potential reasons for its closure: It never got nearly as much buzz as it probably should have, their Twitter and Facebook pages were lacking, the seating arrangement was awkward and the back yard never got much use, the menu probably could have used some pasta dishes and wider non-pizza options, they didn't deliver, and, of course, high rents.

The space has been on the market for the past few months; if it's been rented we'll probably be learning about its replacement soon.

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Reader Comments (25)

This neighborhood has gotten truly depressing. Nothing worthwhile remains...

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterFelton

Thats too bad, they were good, but you cant just be good these days, you have to get out there and market your business and continue to innovate your menu.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJbob

All the fun aged out of park slope.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterSouth Sloper

This pizza was truly mediocre, as was Pete's Pizza in that space before it. The dough was too spongy, the sauce was too sweet, and the topping combinations were like they halfheartedly tried to replicate Roberta's without really understanding how Roberta's ingredients always complement each other.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterp.

Agreed. The pizza was a little less than mediocre. (The stuff they had outside for the street fair looked a lot like the Chef Boyardee stuff my Mom made us in the 60s.) And the vibe in the place was strange. I don't think they ever got much repeat business. It's easy to blame restaurant failures on high rents or "changes in the neighborhood", when the reality is a weak product and bad service. La Villa continues to do well just a couple of blocks up 5th Ave, and now Two Boots across the street.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterPizza lover

I thought the food was great, but ridiculously overpriced.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJed

I thought the pizza was innovative and tasty when they first opened (the pies had women's names then) but soon (maybe when one of the owners left) they lamely renamed the pies after neighborhoods (the "Emily" became the "Coney Island" or something like that) and they tamed down the ingredients. The wine was expensive and insultingly bad the last time I went there. I'm surprised they made it as long as they did.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterLarry Lockhorn

Food was okay, but portions were small and priced too high. I hope whatever replaces their space will be able to turn this stretch of 5th ave around.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered Commenternormality

The fact that there wasn't much Neapolitan competition probably mattered less than the fact they were very close to La Villa and Two Boots and not that far from Numero 28.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterACE

As others have said, they were terrific when they first opened. But over time, they got worse and worse. Last time we went in was in the winter. The place clearly was on its last legs. The brunch menu was gone, but they offered to put an egg on any pizza instead. The wings, which had been delicious in the past, were damn near tasteless, as was the previously excellent caesar salad. Even the pizza was lacking.

It was no surprise when I heard the place was for rent.

The early incarnation will be missed, but that has been missed already.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered Commenterelecsheep

Table 87 on 3rd and 10th is worth mentioning in the solid pizza discussion as they deliver to the Slope, and are really really good.

I actually noticed Brooklyn Central pop on Seamless in just in the last month or so (along with Bonnie's and a couple of other places I wouldn't normally think delivered btw). That may have been a bad sign.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered Commenternickslope

It was terrible after the first year.

For those lamenting the death of Park Slope because a little known, not very good pizza place closed....get a grip.

park slope has some of the best pizza in NYC with Franny's, Giuesppina's, Toby's and a soon to open Artichoke Basille and Patsy's. Very few neighborhoods has such a tremendous selection of pizza.

June 29, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEd

I loved this place when it opened but the vibe instantly changed with the departure of Matt and Emily. Emily's in Clinton Hill is a much better pizzeria.

June 30, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterReb

@Ed Giuseppinas and Tobys are both great but I wouldnt call that PS. Most folks in PS wouldnt even wak that far especially on a weekday.

June 30, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterJbob

Agreed. Fantastic when it opened, wondered what happened shortly thereafter. Found the reason at Emily in Clinton Hill - it's worth the trek.

June 30, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterUncle Jesse

great brick oven pizza? Toby's, hands down. good vibe, great bartenders, solid rotating beer selection. a walk from the Slope but worth it.

July 1, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterScooby Doosh

The service was never very good as is unfortunately too often the case in the neighborhood and the beverage program was like a copy of a copy of a really well thought out menu.

July 1, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterA

Hugo & Sons, the new place on 7th Avenue is a great new addition to the neighborhood with good food, but also A+ service. Other places that have that down are Convivium Osteria, Al Di La, Stone Park, Blue Ribbon, Frannie's, Moim, Talde, Thistle Hill Tavern and Faros.

July 1, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTim

Huh, never heard of the place.

July 2, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterMepsker

That's because it's new. As I said.

July 2, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterTim

The Patsy's on Dean Street is open. The backyard is gorgeous. No liquor license yet. The pizza was good.

July 2, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterEBK

This place will be pizza corner for all peoples.

July 4, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterDavid

This was probably our favorite spot in the Slope. Solid (if not world class) food, great backyard, great staff, great vibe. Where else could you get artisan pizza and watch sports at the same time? Really sorry to see it go.

July 14, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterUgh

I love this information very much. Thanks for this kind of information.

October 13, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterline for pc

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