What to eat (endless excellence)
Eating in Naples: instructions for use
Acting as a Neapolitan starts with a chat and breakfast in a bar between 7 and 8.30 am and with a cornetto (croissant) stuffed with cream and a candied cherry to be absolutely eaten while standing at the counter.
You can choose as well a brioche or an “ischitano” (Ischia Island style) cornetto, a mix of short and puff dough. Only when you arrive at your last bite, the barman gets ready to prepare your coffee that must be very hot and that you can drink after some water.
At about 11 am, a Neapolitan generally breaks with a pizzetta (and by sure another coffee) while at lunch, generally not earlier than 1.30/2 pm, if there is no time for going back home, there are a lot of options, according to the time at disposal: if it is actually short the choice is for pizza a portafoglio or for a cuoppo.
Cuoppo is one of those not healthy but delicious cuddle: a little paper bag, although nowadays it is easier to find an artistic intense yellow paper cone, full of fried food.
The most typical are vegetable based and they are the same kind we prepare at home on Sundays as starters.
A traditional cuoppo must contain crocchè (fried smashed potato), arancini (rice balls) and zeppole (small fried pizza dough). If it not enough, it is possible to add eggplant slices and courgette flowers, if their season is on.
The sea food cuoppo is a “touristic” invention, but by sure it is not a pity to eat an irresistibile fried anchovies one!
Another option can be the “marenna”(snack): a home evocating piece of bread stuffed with what you prefer: you can find the “real” ones in food shops like those selling pasta, milk, etc. (we call them “salumerie”).
Generally, it was the typical lunch bag prepared by mums and wifes with what was left at dinner, not to waste food. Two very tasty ones are sausages and friarielli (local broccoli) or with meat balls in sauce!
If break time is a little bit longer, a Neapolitan’s choice is to go to a pizzeria or to a tavola calda (small family run restaurant) where you can generally find pasta dishes: in the less touristic ones you can find home made dishes like pasta with beans or with lentils or with potatoes…
Dinner time is quite late, at least from 8.30 pm, although now, at lunch as well, the kitchens are opened earlier (from 12.30 am and from 7.30 pm).
Central Railway Station and surroundings
Many restaurants, still frequented by the locals and where it is still possible to taste the traditional cooking and, obviously, pizza!
Beyond the never ending pizzerias sequence (many of them are brand new ones…), you can still find some traditional pizzerias as well and small “trattoria” (a kind of family run restaurants, generally quite small) where you can taste as well homemade dishes such as “genovese” sauce (a delicious onion stew with beef meat) and ragù sauce. Focus on Tribunali street…
So so many small trattorias, once especially frequented by the locals.
Partenope Street seafront
A long sequence of restaurants and pizzerias, many of which very touristic, but of good quality in most of the cases. At Borgo Marinari, surrounding Castel dell’Ovo (the Castle of the Egg), just located on the sea level, some of the most traditional restaurants.
The heart of Naples street food tradition! Taralli, vegetable stuffed pizzas, tripes, fried fish (even though fried vegetables are more traditional…).
Ending side of Toledo Street
By Trieste e Trento Square: many other good addresses to taste the local street food.