Naples – San Ferdinando – restaurants off Via Chiaia

Carrying on from Via Toledo, Via Chiaia is one of the principal shopping streets in Naples. The restaurants start to get more upmarket around here.

Pizzeria Brandi (Intermediate B), 1/2 Salita Sant’Anna di Palazzo (first right going up Via Chiaia from Piazza Trieste e Trento), www.brandi.it

Brandi

A very famous pizzeria due to the fact that the chef who invented Pizza Margherita worked here. In 1889 chef Raffaele Esposito was invited to court to make a special new pizza for Queen Margherita. She liked it so much that he named his creation in honour of her.

Home of the Margherita

He used red tomatoes, white mozzarella and green basil to represent the colours of the Italian flag. It is claimed he was the first person to add cheese but other local pizzaiolos contend the combination existed in Naples before him.

Oven

President Clinton also ate here on his visit.

Personally I think it’s an overpriced tourist trap and you can get better pizza elsewhere, but it’s an experience I suppose and the atmosphere is quite nice. They are a restaurant too so you can get other kinds of food.

Kukai Nibu (Intermediate B-), 52 Via Carlo de Cesare, Tel. 081 411 905, www.kukai.it

This is a modern trendy and relatively authentic Japanese sushi bar, which makes a refreshing change when you get tired of just eating Italian grub.

Kukai

I had some excellent edamame (fresh salted soya beans which you pop out of the pod straight into your mouth.

Edamame

The nigiri is pretty good and quite reasonable. I had salmon, squid and toro (belly tuna, the best cut), although the soya sauce was not kikkoman (essential as far as I’m concerned).

I also had some tempura which was well made but came with a miniscule dipping bowl too small to fit the tempura in, and strangely some salt. It should also come with some grated daikon (giant radish or mooli) but the kitchen was unable to supply it, strange given the number of Chinese people there are here.

They stock my favourite Japanese beer, Sapporo Black Label, which can be hard to get hold of even in Japan.

Naples 2011 480

With some miso suru (soup made with bean paste, tofu and kelp) and two tiny bowls of plain rice to fill me up the bill came to €42.

Jorudan Sushi in Vomero is better but this place is easier to get to. It’s very popular so it’s best to reserve.

 

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