I first visited Napoli for a short city break and instantly fell in love. Narrow cobbled streets, a ruff air that feels oh so slightly dangerous and plenty of amazing food and beverages at bargain prices. Whats not to love
A year after my first visit, I now have ended up going another couple times and with a Neapolitan bar tendering boyfriend… what were the chances, but thats another story. Two times We have visited naples, and because of him he has shown me the real Naples that all locals know and love, me included!
In the summer, copious amounts of aperitifs, and the winter wrap up warm and wear wellys because when it rains it really fucking rains. A canoe otherwise may be taken into consideration
Summer nights in the streets of Napoli is one of the main reasons I have become obsessed with it. (as well as the fact you can drink one Aperol spritz for no more than a couple quid). Wandering aimlessly, trying every street food possible and embracing the nightlife of standing in Piazza Belini with 100s of others enjoying just being and getting of course completely smashed.
You have two sides to Naples, the historical centre, filled with character and amazing small venders with a take it or leave it attitude. Neopolitans perhaps aren’t the most forthcoming with hospitable service. So don’t expect a five star style of service. If thats what you yearn for, perhaps this area isn’t your spot.
A twenty minute walk you will wander into the more sophisticated side, filled with designer shops, decadent bars and much cleaner streets. If you go this way stop at the Gambrinus for the most expensive coffee you will find in Naples and refined pastries. Sit outside with a sfogliatella and espresso and look upon Piazza del plebiscito. Wander down Via chilli until you will find a small piazza with Gran Caffe Cimmino, perfect for Aperol Spritz and complimentary snacks. Sit for hours and watch Neapolitan life go by, (the fanciers version though).
Now, on to probably the most important topic, and thing of my life. Menella. There are few words to describe my relationship with this shop. But I will try to do it justice. This heavenly contribution to the world of Gelato… and food in general. Starting off as a Buffalo Mozzarella shop, they then made the GENIUS decision to use buffalo milk to make the gelato. I am sure your mind is already realising the extreme creamy taste, and perhaps you are already salivating. Menella will forever be my happy place and probably the quietest I ever am in life while enjoying every mouthful. ( you can take kilos away if staying in your own flat, dangers but genius).
Naples means pizza to the majority of the world. Every pizzeria is great, but there are three that take the top spot. First, why you want to join the queue for Sorbillo, is a myth. The real classic pizzeria is Antic Pizzeria E friggitoria Di Matteo. Make sure your hungry because the real treat is the Friggitoria, deep fried pasta stuffed with cheese and meat, then a crostini potato and cheese. Keto dieters jog on, this is for true carb lovers. The pizza…… the main event, light dough, with a rich tomato sauce and creamy cheese. Choose your topping. This make time, Its 4 pages long the menu. Learn to eat a pizza in a proper way. Fold each slice in half and make a pizza sandwich. You will question why you never did this before. Everyone loves tradition, but its never bad to try something new. And PIzzareia Fiore Bianco has served up a new style of pizza that is giving the classic Naples pizzerias a run for their money. An innovative refreshing place for the neoplitan scene, with a dough us londoners know and love. However, a world of toppings to tickle your tastebuds with an experimental flare. One to try……. very similar reactions shall be had to that of Marmite. Friarelli. Now I love broccoli, but this wasn’t a broccoli that I will be eating again. People from Naples love it, I however love a good old margarita. Not only doing pizza, but small appetisers to get your stomach rumbling for the main event. Now the third. Antica Friggitoria – Masardona. Hidden away in the suburbs of Naples, a 25 minute walk from the historical centre, is the best and oldest Deep Fried Pizza restaurant. Take a ticket number, and wait to be yelled at for your order. Only locals venture here, so be prepared for an experience. Now, deep fried, you think to greasy, fatty and over indulgent. Over indulgent, yes, but greasy hell no! Lighter than air and stuffed to the brim with cheeses and meats. A calzone then deep fried. A match made in heaven. This is a must for those desperate to try the truly authentic Neapolitan street food.
Now I could keep talking forever about what to do…. and what to eat of course, but ill save that for the next blog. Perhaps the over indulging has been enough for this read.