It was a sad day when the Bushwick favorite of 10 years, Northeast Kingdom, closed this past spring. It left a void on Wyckoff Ave begging the question of what will inevitably fill it and if it will compare to the much beloved farm-to-table fare that once occupied it.
This week, we have that answer. Famous NYC chain Artichoke Basille’s Pizza is set to open at 18 Wyckoff Ave early this Fall. Owners and cousins Francis Garcia and Sal Basille opened their first Artichoke location back in 2008 on East 14th St. Since its induction into the vast pizza culture of New York City, the chain has received positive recognition in major publications from Business Insider to the New York Times. It even won Time Out New York’s Eat Out Award for “best new pizza” and has since gone to open six further locations in the Manhattan and Brooklyn area. Bushwick will mark its eighth.
Bushwick is no stranger to concept pizza joints. Think: Roberta’s, Archie’s, Pizza Party, Norbert’s, and Union Pizza Works, just to name a few. Really, Artichoke is just another addition to that list. However, feelings have been mixed throughout the neighborhood regarding its impending opening. One local who lived near the original Artichoke when it first opened and now lives just two blocks from the soon to be Bushwick location says “the absurdly giant yet equally pricey slices were some of the most delicious pizza around. Now…an Artichoke will be down the block from me once more and I don’t know whether to be psyched for my tastebuds or worried for my arteries.”
Not all the reviews have been quite so raving. Another Bushwick resident admits “the place never appealed to [him]. Artichoke would’ve fit right into a space at The Loom, maybe, but not on that beloved corner location.” Bushwick Daily reached out to other local business owners on their thoughts, yet they declined to comment, opting to “stay neutral.”
Even the owners recognize the shoes they are attempting to fill by occupying that corner that was once Northeast Kingdom. Garcia told DNAInfo “I gotta say, it was probably the best hamburger I had in my life.” Regardless, they “love the neighborhood” and are “really excited to be a part of it.”
With their projected opening date falling between late September and early October, only time will tell how Artichoke takes to the neighborhood, and vice versa. Luckily pizza is pretty universally appreciated and their cheesy, warm, and filling slices are coming just in time for Fall.
Artichoke Basille’s Pizza
NYC pizza chain famed for its thick slices covered in artichoke dip and four cheeses.
18 Wyckoff Ave between Troutman St and Starr St (off the Jefferson St stop in the L train)
Feature image courtesy of Katarina Hybenova.