I love Italian food, have visited many parts of Italy and eaten many delicious meals but eating out in Naples is where I found the absolute apex of Italian dining.
Here you’ll find food with real flavour and Naples is a real city. When you wander the streets you see real life, people making traditional dishes, eating seasonal food and shopping every day but never at the supermarket.
So here are my tips for the best places to eat out in Naples.
Naples is of course famous for being the home of pizza and this wonderful dish is the city’s classic street food. But did you know that the making of this peasant dish is strictly regulated? Neapolitan pizzas have a very thin base with a puffy crust. I had a seriously outstanding pizza (yes I’d call it the best in the world) in the historic centre of Naples at the Ristorante Europeo on Via M Campodisola.
For a special meal in Naples try the suburb of Posillipo up on the hill with views over the Gulf of Naples. The word means “that which soothes pain” and the Rosiella restaurant is set among mansions, vineyards and orchards and scented air. Salvatore’s food reflects the many different influences in the food of Naples – Greek, Arabic, French and Spanish – he uses produce from his kitchen gardens and even makes his own wine.
A highlight was the stringy plaits of fresh mozzarella. In Vanulo, just outside Naples, people queue up every day for the world’s only organic buffalo mozzarella. Here the very happy buffaloes are all named after girlfriends and the product is not exported but sold directly to the public – and sold out every day by 1pm. It tastes like nothing you’ve ever experienced before and must be consumed within 24 hours.
The Dolci is no less than divine, from the classic Rum Babar to Amarello cherry pie, I never ate anything in Naples that wasn’t exceptional.
Another way to discover the food of Naples is on a food tour.
By Natasha von Geldern
Do you love Italian food? What are your recommendations for eating out in Naples?