If you’re only in Naples for a few days and want to eat the best pizza and avoid disappointment, these reviews offer a few good options. One word of advice: If you approach a pizzeria and there’s a line out the door, as there often is, do not hesitate to push your way through the crowd and get your name on the list; it’s the only way to secure a table. My love affair with Neapolitan pizza began in 2007, when I ate my first Margherita pizza at Pizzeria Da Michele. On my last trip, in spring 2010, I decided to get some up to date information on my favorites and test out the lesser-known pizzerias in Naples. Here’s what I discovered.
#1 Antica Pizzeria Da Michele
This place is still the best, in my opinion. Famous for offering only two types of pizza, one with cheese and one without. The pizzeria has recently been launched into mega-star status after being featured in the movie adaptation of Eat, Pray, Love, starring Julia Roberts (in fact, I couldn’t get pizza there one day a few months ago because they were filming). In short, the place offers the best pizza I’ve ever eaten: extremely thin crust, almost uncooked in the middle, with perfect sauce, and fior di latte cheese. I always get the doppia mozzarella version, which is double mozzarella. The fame of the place has taken its toll, and I had to wait two hours to get a table. If you can’t handle the wait, you can always order a pizza to go. Fortunately, Da Michele isn’t simply a tourist trap, and I have eaten beside local Napoletani more often than not. Margherita costs 4.50, no cover. Via Cesare Sersale 1/3
Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-11pm
#2 Pizzeria Sorbillo
This place is not only a pizzeria; it’s a zoo. Ok, not literally, but the doorway is always filled with a massive crowd, making it of paramount importance to arrive at least one hour before closing time to secure a table. The pizza is delicious and the menu offers a huge selection of interesting topping combinations. Feel free to order your own creation too. The only negative aspect of this place is its décor, which reminds me of a food court. Margherita costs 3.50, no cover.
Via Tribunali 32
Hours: Monday-Saturday, Noon until 3pm and 7pm-11pm
#3 Pizzeria Di Matteo
Authentic atmosphere and delicious pizza, this pizzeria keeps it real by setting street food out of its doorway. Risotto balls (arancini), fried pizzas, and pizzas folded in half will be hocked while you wait for a table. The fried pizza is an interesting creation, but it doesn’t beat a traditional Margherita. It looks like a giant balloon of dough and is filled with ricotta and cubes of ham. Margherita costs 5.00, 1.50 cover.
Via dei Tribunali 94
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9am-Midnight
#4 Pizzeria Lombardi
I’ve written a more complete review here. This place’s tacky décor is forgotten the moment the pizzas arrive. Their crust is one of my favorites, with just the right combination of chewiness and heft. More expensive than other restaurants, it offers impressive portions that make it worth it. Try the top of the line Nando pizza, which features buffalo’s milk ricotta. Nando costs 9.00, 1.50 cover.
Via Foria 12
Hours: Everyday, Lunch and Dinner
#5 Trianon da Circo
Originally vying for the number one spot for best pizza in Naples, Trianon has never impressed me. I’m not sure if the quality has gone down in recent years or if the pizza just isn’t my style. It’s good (indeed, it’s very hard to get a bad pizza in Naples), but the crust is not nearly as delicate as at other pizzerias. Also, the well-known DOC pizza, which comes with sliced DOC-grade tomatoes instead of sauce, has never been juicy enough for me. Trianon is located across the street from Da Michele and offers a good alternative to waiting. Margherita costs 4.50, no cover.
Via Pietro Colletta
Hours: Everyday, Lunch and Dinner
#6 Pizzeria Da Ettore
Perhaps the most disappointing pizzeria I’ve been to in Naples, Da Ettore is located in the upscale Santa Lucia neighborhood, near Castel dell’Ovo. The prices are high, the pizzas are small, and the service is awful. I ordered a carafe of red wine, received white, and when the waiter finally returned with a carafe of red, it was covered with dust, a thin layer of which graced the top of the vino. I’ve only eaten here once, and that was enough. Margherita costs 9.00, 3.00 cover.
Pizzeria Da Ettore
Hours: Open most days. Call for exact hours.
Tel: 081 764 0498
Written by Mattie Bamman for EuropeUpClose.com