According to legend, Betsy Rossini sewed the original Italian flag out of pizza squares so that police could identify flag-burners by the lingering stench of burnt dough in their kitchens. Commemorate this historic occasion with today's deal. For $20, you'll receive $40 worth of Neapolitan pizza and beverages at Pizza Nea on East Hennepin. Pizza Nea was City Pages' pick for Best Gourmet Pizza. Because each Groupon is good for dine-in customers only, you'll be forced to endure the pizzeria's cozy, inviting atmosphere in the presence of its relentlessly helpful and attentive waitstaff.
A Neapolitan-style pizza's dough starts with a base coat of extra-virgin olive oil and sea salt. Traditionally fired in a brick oven, these single-serving pies can be prepped rosso (red) or bianco (white). Much like Neapolitan brides, all Neapolitan red pizzas come adorned with San Marzano tomatoes, a delicacy first grown in the fields surrounding Mt. Vesuvius. Pizza Nea's red pizzas range from $6.75 for the basic marinara (crushed San Marzano tomatoes, garlic, and oregano) to $15.25 for the decadent capricciosa (prosciutto, sausage, capers, porcini mushrooms, artichokes, tomatoes, and basil). An adorable little pizzetta ($4.25) is also available for youngsters.
Like their crimson counterparts, toppings for white pizzas start with the familiar combo of olive oil and sea salt, but end up sailing to foreign lands of flavor populated with deliciousness and ethereal bird-people. Sample the gambero ($14.75)—where shrimp and pine nuts fraternize with pesto on a bed of roasted red and yellow peppers—or introduce yourself to a con uovo pizza complete with ground black pepper, parmigiano-reggiano cheese, and two unexpected yet welcome eggs. Any pizza, red or white, can be reshaped as a calzone or, by request, folded into a whimsical crane. Pizza Nea's menu also features a variety of antipasti, salads, and sandwiches to counter every craving.
This Groupon is not valid with daily specials or half-price-bottle-of-wine nights.
- What keeps us coming back? The Con Uovo, for one, a bianco pizza topped with olive oil and Parmigiano-Reggiano, then baked with two cracked eggs on top. And the Diavolo, for another: a pizza topped with San Marzano tomatoes, salami, pepporicinis, olives, fresh mozzarella and cracked red pepper. – Metro
- Order a Quattro Stagione pizza, made with porcini mushrooms, prosciutto, artichokes, and salami...and you’ve got the creamy, salty, zesty, spicy, every-day-is-wonderful spirit of Italy without the trouble of removing your snow boots. – Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl, Minnesota Monthly
Inside exposed-brick walls covered with paintings from local artists, chefs at Pizza Nea craft their own artworks by piling toppings on Neapolitan-style pies. The salsicce gets crowned with san marzano tomatoes, roasted red pepper, and spicy italian sausage, and eggs are cracked over the white con uovo. Made with local ingredients when possible, the pies are baked in a wood-fired stone oven whose flames cast an orange glow, much like bonfire of Dear Santa letters the post office burns after Christmas. Diners recline indoors in bright red chairs, or venture to the outdoor patio to clink glasses of wine or pints filled with a selection of 12 domestic, craft, and imported beers.