I know it’s ridiculous to declare the best pizzeria in Naples. If you ask around on the street, people will tell you, with 100% certainty, a bunch of different spots: “Sorbillo.” “22!” “Da Michele, certo!” I also know that I, personally—a 22 year old American who has mild to severe indigestion upon eating cheese—am in no position to make any bold pizza-related claims.
However, I really, really need to spread the gospel of Vecchia Napoli, a hole in the wall pizzeria right off of Piazza Montesanto, easily missed because an awning obscures the signage. (Address: Piazza Montesanto, 23).
I’m going to get right to the heart of the matter: the crust. This particular crust is what God would be were S/He to manifest as a bread product. It’s thick in the right spots and thin in the right spots (ugh my dream), chewy, slightly charred, and the perfect vehicle for high quality toppings. You can go with the classic, margherita—just oil tomatoes, and mozzarella—but I’m wild about their rucola pizza, which is topped with mozzarella, prosciutto crudo, and lots and lots of arugula, which, according to my research, counteracts the calories of anything it touches.
You can also enjoy tasty fried things, like arancini (rice balls) or fiori di zucchi fritti (fried zucchini flowers), all of which I recommend whole-heartedly. The waiter, a downward-curved man in his late sixties, is a gem and actually pays a significant amount of attention to you, which is a rarity in Naples.
Ok, there, I said it. I hope I don’t get roughed up by Sorbillo or Da Michele loyalists!