Appleman Discusses Plans for Pulino’s in the Big Apple

Those inspirational lights are shining bright on Nate Appleman. His newest venture, Pulino’s Bar and Pizzeria in Manhattan with Keith McNally, is already receiving some pretty intense, but positive, reviews. Well, we figured it was bound to happen when the Big Apple is in Nate Appleman’s name. Pizza aficionado Adam Kuban, among others, already gave Appleman’s resto a heck of a thumbs up.

But the James Beard Award-winner for “Best Rising Chef” is a bit uncertain about the skyrocketing notoriety. Appleman tells Metromix and Eater San Francisco his doubts about the hype.

“Restaurants that generally get attention like this end up being huge failures; the hype is built up so much and people expect so much,” Appleman said in a Metromix interview. “Honestly, it’s ridiculous.” Appleman won the coveted Beard award for his work on A16 and SPQR in San Francisco.

While Pulino’s serves up a menu of common foods, the methodology of how they’re prepared is said to be unique, even by Appleman himself. It’s a menu of wood-fired everything, with all the meat butchering done in-house.

Appleman told Metromix that even though the pie is the main focus, he is looking to build a reputation as more than just a pizzeria. The plans for the venue were inspired by two things: his love for Italy, which sparked in 1999 while in Florence; and his childhood, which consisted of growing up in the Midwest, going to local pizza places and bowling alleys. We’re thinking this might be the best pizzeria after all. Everyone knows projects are done better when there’s meaning and a sense of simplicity to them. Thank you, Appleman, for that tiny peek into your life. From what we’re hearing, it’s quite delicious.