Truffle oil, burrata, and smoked salmon aren’t ingredients you’d expect at a typical pizza place, but Da Legna manages to incorporate them into beautiful artisanal pies that make you question your loyalty to cheese and pepperoni. Many New Haven locals agree that Da Legna has some of the best pizza around, but somehow word hasn’t made its way to the tourist crowds- good news, cause you’ll never see a line like the ones at Pepe’s. We’ve been hooked since our first bite of Funghi pizza last spring, and I’m pretty sure you will be too.
The menu is divided into three sections: small plates, salads, and pizzas. The pizza side offers 20 artisanal creations as well as a “traditional” create-your-own option (that includes vegan toppings).
We still haven’t tried the salads, though the toppings sound incredible- shaved fennel, caramelized pear, parmesan crisps, slab bacon, to name a few. It was hard to pass up wild mushroom puffs and goat cheese tartlets for leaves, but I promise we’ll get around to that too.
The seemingly-infinite small plate menu has something for every craving, from a crispy mac and cheese wedge to tuna tartare stuffed inside a grilled avocado.
Basil ricotta gnocci
This flavorful basil gnocci was mixed with a warm eggplant caponata and came with toasted basil-swirled bread on the side. It was big enough to share and made for a perfect start to our meal.
The tuna tartare came with three huge pieces of fresh tuna covered in a savory lemoncello dressing on half a grilled avocado. While it strays from the Italian theme, they do a great job with this one.
Crispy mac and cheese wedge
The mac and cheese wedge was another crowd-pleaser, a little small to share (at least I didn’t want to) so maybe get your own.
These vegetables have become all the rage in the past year, and Da Legna definitely doesn’t disappoint. The sprouts came on a sizzling skillet with thick pieces of bacon and a very sweet balsamic glaze.
Wild mushroom puffs
We still can’t decide what was better on this plate- the fluffy pastry dough and mushroom filling or the truffle sour cream that accompanied the puffs.
Our favorite pizza here is the Funghi, which we’ve gotten at least 5 times since our first time at Da Legna. It’s topped with ricotta, buratta, wild mushrooms, tarragon, and truffle oil.
We’ve also had some create-your-own pizzas, both a sausage/mozarella red pie and a vegan pizza. Soy cheese is surprisingly delicious.. and the sausage was a classic you don’t want to miss.
Sausage and buffalo mozzarella
You can ask for vegan and gluten-free options, which have their own separate menu:
The last pie we tried was the Pecora: goat cheese, ricotta, pistachios, truffle honey, and caramelized red onions. The honey and onions made the pizza sweet enough to win over a dessert lover like myself, and the cheeses toned it down enough for a normal person would love it too. The pistachio crunch was a perfect touch- we’ll be back for more.
Da Legna lives up to the New Haven pizza standard we all know and love, and then some. Even if you’re not in the mood for pizza, the rest of their menu is enough reason to make it over to East Rock and feast on all the small plates (there are SO MANY) they have to offer. They’re open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week, and offer outdoor seating during the warmer days.