Naples Journals

Eating Out in Naples

A travel journal to Naples by travel2000

Quote: Food is the main event for Southern Italy. The ingredients here are fresh and readily available. Many restaurants here are not fancy, some are downright uninviting, but what matters most is how good the food tastes. I share with you a handful of my favorites.

Eating Out in Naples

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Quote:
I have not had a bad meal in Naples, so every meal is a highlight. When I am back home in the US, I reminisce how wonderful the food is and how fresh the ingredients are in Italy. Snacks, gelati and pastries are also highlights. Seafood is another highlight for me. Stroll through any food market and you can marvel at the live seafood for sale. Anything from baby octopus, eel, cuttlefish, and of course, meat such as a hanging whole baby lamb, rabbit, and other delicacies.Quick Tips: Avoid the "menu turistico"…these are tourist traps and I wouldn’t want you to leave Naples with a bad experience just because you went to the wrong places. Menus are divided into Antipasti (appetizers), Primo (usua...Read More

Brandi

Restaurant

Quote:
This is the most publicized pizzeria in Naples. This is where world leaders come (President Clinton was here during the G7 summit in ’94.) In the brochures (there are some glossy literature and business cards at the entrance), Brandi claims to be the place where pizza margherita was invented. There are many tourists as well as locals here. It is almost always packed so expect to wait. The pizzas are good, but the price is higher. This is a convenient stop as it is close to the Royal Palace and via Toledo.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Brandi
Via S. Anna di Palazzo, 1
Naples, Italy 80132
+39 081416928

Friggitoria Vomero

Restaurant

Quote:
Friggitoria is a snack bar which sells fried food. This is quintessential Neapolitan, the graffe (basically like doughnuts), potato croquettes, fried rice balls, eggplants etc. Also try the zeppole, which are little pieces of pizza dough fried. These snack places exist around Naples and are a great place to stop for a quick and cheap lunch. These do tend to fill you up and are greasy but so good it’s hard to resist.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Friggitoria Vomero
Via Cimarosa 44 (Vomero)
Naples, Italy
+39 081-578-3130

Gambrinus

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a classic coffee house, right across the street from the Royal Palace and on piazza del Plebiscito which used to be a huge parking lot until the mayor cleaned it up. Walk past the outdoor seating and into a different century. Everything here seems to be covered with gold. There are elaborate chandeliers, painted murals on the wall, formal room for sit-down service. I often come here for a quick caffé and pastry because of its convenient location and to soak in the atmosphere. Sit outside and people watch.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Gambrinus
Via Chiaia 1-2
Naples, Italy
+39 081-417-582

Ciro al Borgo Marinaro

Restaurant | "Ciro"

Quote:
This is amongst the strip of restaurants below the Castel dell’Ovo, which means a nice view and higher prices overall. Ciro has been recommended to me as a place to take out of town guests and my parents. It has good service, inside and outside seating, and a wonderful view of the castle. I’ve had mostly seafood here. I’ve tried the mussels with lemon and pepper, grilled little octopus, and spaghetti con vongole (with clams), all excellent. Borgo Marinaro is a great place to stroll. On the bridge over, there are card readers, entertainers, and sometimes bride and grooms having their wedding photos taken. At night, there are mandolin players and people selling roses. The last time I din...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Ciro al Borgo Marinaro
Borgo Marinaro-S. Lucia
Naples, Italy 80132
+39 0817646006

Quote:
This is in Vomero district, which is upper-middle class and has many shops and residential buildings. Donna Teresa serves excellent home cooked meals. By that, I mean tomato sauce with meatballs or sausages…eat well here as the atmosphere makes you feel like eating with family. Sit down, order the house wine, and order a few dishes, and prepare to leave with a full satisfied stomach. There are a few cafes and gelateria opened late in the area, convenient for those who want to walk off the huge meal and wind down before bedtime.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Osteria Donna Teresa
Via Kerbaker 58
Naples, Italy
+39 081-556-7070

Osteria da Tonino

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a typical family-run restaurant, with father as the greeter and mother in the kitchen cooking up a storm. It is always crowded here, as the food is consistently good and the prices very reasonable. Be prepared to wait for a table. However, once you sit down, you’ll be greeted by good service, good food, and a fun atmosphere. The tables are crowded, but that just gives you a chance to see what other people are eating.

No credit cards are accepted here, so be sure to bring enough cash. Last time I was there, I spent about 30,000 lire per person, and we ate a big meal.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Osteria da Tonino
Via Santa Teresa A Chiaia 47
Naples, Italy 80121
+39 081-421-533

Da Michele

Restaurant

Quote:
This is ground zero for pizza- they serve only two kinds: magherita (mozzarella, tomato and basil) and marinara (tomato and garlic). Order one or the other OR BOTH and a beer and you are all set. Ok, this is the competition of Trianon, down the street. Both are good but I think this has the edge. Try both and decide for yourself.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 25, 2001

Da Michele
Via Cesare Sersale, 1/3
Naples, Italy
+39 081 553-9204

Osteria della Mattonella

Restaurant | "Osteria della Mattonelle"

Quote:
This is on a back street in the Spanish Quarter and is so small it only fits 20 or so people. The décor is interesting, the walls covered with tiles. An Italian friend told me that "mattonelle" means tiles, so I guess that’s where the name of the restaurant comes from. Local wine is served in a beautiful ceramic pitcher. The food served here is humble and would be things you eat at home. There are no expensive seafood or other delicacies on the menu. I thought this was one of the best meals I’ve had. It is representative of what most people would make at home. Make sure you try the polpette (meatballs). It comes by itself without pasta and is served in a light tomato sauce...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 26, 2001

Osteria della Mattonella
Via G. Nicotera, 13
Naples, Italy 80132
+39 081416541

Da Dora

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a very popular place but serves exceptional food. You must book a table in advance so keep that number handy. Seafood is the star here, and the prices are higher because of that. Again, the place is very very small (that’s why you must make a booking, una prenotazione.) I’m a big fan of spaghetti con vongole (with clams) and I think they have the best ones here. The clams in Naples are so small, they look like little buttons. Once you taste one, you’ll be surprised how much flavor is packed into so little meat. They are so tasty and sweet. (In the US, look for cockles, as they tend to be smaller than the clams here and are sweeter.) Other favorites are the g...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 26, 2001

Da Dora
Via Palasciano, 28
Naples, Italy 80122
+39 081680519

La Caffettiera

Restaurant

Quote:
Set in a busy piazza in the center of Vomero district, this café is an elegant meeting place for the upper-middle class residents. Distinguished old men tend the coffee bar, a bit snobby and very formal. The coffee here is good and is a good place to rest your heels between shopping. There is a back room for sit-down service, but I’ve never been beyond the bar.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 26, 2001

La Caffettiera
Piazza Vanvitelli 14 (Vomero)
Naples, Italy
+39 081-578-2592

Quote:
Via Toledo 214

081-400-063

This is a chocolate shop, quite famous in Naples. There are a wide selection, from plain chocolate to nut-filled to truffles with fillings. They also sell bars of chocolate, the best of which is the dark bitter chocolate. Also good are the coffee beans coated with chocolate. Very bitter inside but a delicious combination.

As with any pasticcerie, you get the beautiful paper wrapped with ribbon. Italians take such pride in what they sell. Even if you buy a couple of sweets, they will make sure it's wrapped nicely.

There are a few branches throughout Naples, but I think the one on Via Toledo is the main shop.

Pintauro

Story/Tip

Quote:
Via Toledo 275
081-417-339

This is a small, unassuming pasticceria that’s been an institution for a long time. Here, you’ll find a marble counter and abrupt service. The selection here is also limited, you won’t find rows of sweets to choose from. However, the sfogliatelle, (famous multi-layered ricotta-filled pastries) and baba (rum soaked sponge cake) are excellent here. The other competitor in the pasticceria field is Scaturchio (see other journal entry).

Scaturchio

Story/Tip

Quote:
Vico Geronimo alle Monarche 5.
081-551-9815

This is in a lively square and many locals feel this is the only place to buy their pastries. There is always debate on whether Pintauro or Scaturchio is better. I think they are both equally good, although I like walking through the weaving streets of Spaccanapoli to Scaturchio and people watch in the piazza San Domenico Maggiore. There is more selection here. Try the sfogliatelle, millefloglie (similar to Napolean, layers of pastry with cream in between) and the cakes are also good.

Useful Tips

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Quote:
A common problem in Naples is language. Most people here don’t speak much English. Sometimes, Neapolitan dialect is spoken, so even if you know Italian, you won’t understand much. I recommend bringing a phrase book with menu description, OR when all else fails, just look around and indicate what you would like. That way, there are no surprises and it’s fun. One note about the bill. As in the rest of Italy, there is a cover charge (called “coperto) of about 5,000 Lire per person. This covers bread and table settings. If there is no service charge added (note this is different from cover charge), then you should leave a tip anywhere from 2,000 to 3,000 for a small restaurant up to 10% maximum...Read More