Saratoga Springs will get a new Neapolitan-style pizzeria later this month with the opening of Flatbread Social at 84 Henry Street. The pizzeria will take over in The Merry Monk’s former space, which is currently getting a totally new look inside. The new owners, Ryan and Sonja McFadden, also own the Henry Street Taproom right next door, and are hoping to counterbalance the hip, quirky and often packed Taproom with the more laidback and family-friendly restaurant.
In addition to a top-notch bar, the McFaddens have always wanted a wood-fired pizzeria. The Taproom’s success, plus its signature, cozy fireplace, served as an inspiration to take the plunge into the realm of wood-fired fare. “There’s just something about cooking pizza, or really cooking anything, in a wood-fired oven that’s a very cool process,” says Ryan. “We fell in love with our fireplace over here in the Henry Street Taproom and thought it’d be a great way to cook.” Two large, wood-fired ovens will actually be the centerpieces of the the Flatbread Social’s dining area. Expect creative, Neapolitan-style pizzas (a thin-crust, simple Italian pizza, not like the stuff you get at Pizza Hut), which use the same local/seasonal ingredients and house sourdoughs that the Henry Street Taproom has become known for. Like the Taproom, Flatbread Social will feature its own curated list of cocktails, craft beers and wines sourced from all over the world.
Prior to moving to Saratoga, the McFaddens had been living in Philadelphia, with Ryan working as an attorney and Sonja as a kindergarten teacher. Back then, opening a bar was just another pipe dream for them. However, with the rise in popularity of craft beers and microbreweries, the couple began to pursue the idea more seriously, looking for places across the Northeast to turn their taproom dream into a reality. A Skidmore alumnus, Sonja suggested Saratoga Springs, and when a space opened up at a former coffeehouse on Henry Street, the couple jumped at the opportunity. “The town has been absolutely great to us,” Ryan says. “We love living here, and we’ve fallen in love with owning a restaurant, and are very excited to expand and open this second restaurant next door.”
The McFaddens expect to have their official opening before the end of the year.