Pizzeria Locale, a restaurant centered around Neapolitan-style pizza, features a cocktail program that lacks hard liquor entirely. Low alcohol cocktails are hot and this entirely low alcohol menu proves that there is both variety and demand to change the traditional cocktail perception.
The goal of this successful program was two-fold. First was avoiding the high alcohol collision with the food. The high acidity of the tomato sauce, the rich sweetness of the buffalo mozzarella and the lightly charred and chewy crust demanded a simplified beverage program. The other goal was showcasing Locale's vast amaro collection. Amari, used mostly as backup mixers in high alcohol cocktails, occupy center stage at Locale, giving guests the ability to enjoy them differently and throughout the meal.
"One of the best things that we tasted during our pre-opening tastings and still to this day is Coke Classic, out of a glass bottle and made with real cane sugar," Chris Donato, manager at Locale said. "It was bright, acidic, a little sweet and herbaceous. It went naturally with pizza. When thinking of cocktails we thought, how can we replicate this in a interesting way? The closest thing that was a lineup of spritzes," he added.
Daniel Bjugstad, Pizzeria Locale's bar manager, has taken the lead on creating an ever-changing selections of spritz-like drinks that challenge the guests' ideas of cocktails and push pairing cocktails with pizza. The Pizzeria's spritz cocktails start with a Italian liqueur, perhaps another ingredient or two and then a sparkling element, like sparkling dry apple cider, coke, prosecco, soda water. Guest favorites include the limoncello spritz and the aperol spritz.