Caffè Gambrinus • Naples

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Caffè Gambrinus - entrance.
Caffè Gambrinus – entrance.

A couple of reasons helped me to decide picking Caffè Gambrinus for a quick stop:

  • Their absolutely beautiful and charming in-store decoration, (with a classy and vintage look)
  • To try an authentic Naples cappuccino,
  • And to finally have a Sfogliatelle (traditional Neapolitan pastry) – a flaky pastry stuffed with a delicious ricotta cream.
Sfogliatelle Riccia.
Sfogliatelle riccia.

My order

We both decided to have a cup of coffee there and get the sfogliatelle for take away.
Here is the complete order:

  • Hubby: caffe del nonno – espresso blended with vanilla ice cream.
  • Mine: Italian cappuccino – double espresso and steamed milk foam.
  • To share: sfogliatelle riccia and sfogliatelle frolla.
Caffe Del Nonno - espresso blended with vanilla ice cream.
Caffe del nonno – espresso blended with vanilla ice cream.
Italian Cappuccino - double espresso and steamed milk foam.
Italian cappuccino – double espresso and steamed milk foam.

You may not know but there are two main types of sfogliatelle:

Sfogliatelle frolla (rounded) and Sfogliatelle riccia (curly).
Of course, I decided to try them both. But here is the difference between them:

Sfogliatelle riccia (the curly one): the crust is some sort of puff pastry (using lard instead of butter), crunchy and flaky.
The filling is not super sweet, made of a mixture of semolina, ricotta, eggs, sugar, candied citrus and cinnamon.
You must eat it still warm, preferrably fresh out the oven.

Sfogliatelle frolla (the rounded one): uses pasta frolla (shortbread crust) instead of the flaky sfoglia crust.
The filling is pretty much the same; a mixture of semolina, ricotta, eggs, sugar, candied citrus and cinnamon.

Sfogliatelle Riccia and Sfogliatelle Frolla.
Sfogliatelle riccia and sfogliatelle frolla (on the right).
Sfogliatelle Frolla.
Sfogliatelle frolla in detail.
Sfogliatelle Riccia.
Sfogliatelle riccia in detail.

Everything was very good.

I personally liked the sfogliatelle frolla better, its pastry is more my type of thing.
No words for its filling though, definitely something from heaven.

I had it again as a pie filling on one of my train trips, simply delicious!

The verdict

The place architecture is beautiful, coffee and pastry equally good. However, they get packed due to its central location!

There is always a waiting line for seating and waiters tend to get a bit distracted.
So in case you are short in time just place your order directly at the counter.

Interesting enough, they charge €0.50 to use their toilets, even if you ordered something.
Unusual, but kinda understandable due to the number of tourists in the surroundings.

Exact location: maps.google.com/maps/ZQEvqxT4vgx

More information: www.grancaffegambrinus.com/en/


You can check more posts here on the blog about my holidays in Europe and also everything I published about Italy or Naples.

Pizzeria Brandi • Best pizza in Naples!

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Pizzeria Brandi - entrance.
Pizzeria Brandi – entrance.

Did you know Naples is the home of pizza?

I was also told that there is no bad pizza in Naples, every place you go you will leave with a happy smile on your face.

Well, I didn’t exactly intend to put it to a test as I had only a single chance to have pizza there, that’s why we picked Brandi Pizzeria.

This place is one of the oldest pizzerias in Italy, and legend says it was where the very first Margherita pizza was ever made, a gift for Queen Margherita that was visiting the city.

Of course, while in Naples we couldn’t miss this one!

My order

Nothing inventive here, we were super traditional with our choices:

  • To share: Vesuvio salad – smoked buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, olives, and mixed leaves.
  • Hubby: Capricciosa pizza – tomato, cheese, mushrooms, peas, and cooked ham.
  • Mine: Margherita pizza. (of course, right? 😜)
Vesuvio Salad - smoked buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, olives, and mixed leaves.
Vesuvio salad – smoked buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, olives, and mixed leaves.
Limonccelo.
Limonccelo.
Capricciosa - tomato, cheese, mushrooms, peas, and cooked ham.
Capricciosa – tomato, cheese, mushrooms, peas, and cooked ham.
Pizza Margherita.
Pizza Margherita.

As you can immediately see, the Neapolitanian pizza has a different crust from the Romanian one.

The base is thin but the borders are fluffy and doughy, more like a bread texture.
It also has a generous amount of tomato sauce.

How did I find the pizza?
Well, personally, it was THE BEST PIZZA IV’E EVER HAD! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Everything was super delicious: tomato sauce, that buttery fresh mozzarella, the uber fluffy dough. YUM, YUM, YUM!

Just a side note about this pizza, different from the Romanian one, eating the whole thing is a very hard task.
The fluffy dough takes a lot of space in your stomach, so manage what you eat in order to finish your plate! 🙂

I also got excited and tried a shot of Limoncello, a traditional Italian liquor.
Super strong but it leaves a pleasant lemon flavour in your mouth. Recommended!

The verdict

The place is small and located in a very busy area, so try to book in advance or arrive a bit earlier during peak hours.

Service was good and pizzas were on our tables very quickly.
Definitely, a must go while in Naples.

Exact location: maps.google.com/maps/2vG5wFSobQ62

More information: www.brandi.it/inglese/


You can check more posts here on the blog about my holidays in Europe and also everything I published about Italy or Naples.

Roma Sparita • Rome (restaurant review)

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Roma Sparita - entrance.
Roma Sparita – entrance.

Since I watched this Antony Bourdain’s episode in Rome (more than 6 years ago) my vocabulary increased by exactly two words: Cacio e Pepe.

The translation is simply cheese and pepper, and it is an authentic Romanian dish.

This is a super simple pasta made only with Romanian Pecorino cheese and black pepper, however its flavour is something from another world.

Searching online what would be the best place to try it, Roma Sparita was the top recommendation, named by a few reviewers as providing a life changing Cacio e Pepe.
So why not check it in person and get our lives changed, eh? 😜

My order

I admit that I was super excited going to this place and didn’t even consider ordering anything else in their menu.

I just wanted to try their Cacio e Pepe.
Anyways, we ended up ordering two more things as follows:

  • Simple salad (to share): simple salad – mixed leaves and tomato.
  • Main: pasta Cacio e Pepe (cheese and pepper).
  • Dessert (to share): tiramisu.
Simple salad - mixed leaves and tomato.
Simple salad – mixed leaves and tomato.
Pasta Cacio e Pepe (cheese and pepper).
Pasta Cacio e Pepe (cheese and pepper).
Tiramisu.
Tiramisu.

As we’re so hyped about this dish, Hubby and I decided to order one each, no sharing this time! 😁
The idea was to have full appreciation of our meals.

Oh boy, what was that cheese bowl!?
Now, do you understand the life changing thing, right?

I simply LOVED it. ❤️

It is delicious, but I must admit that’s a bit salty (I read reviews online about it too), so a glass of wine will do a great job.

Assuming you have no issues with highly salted food, I absolutely can recommend it – SUPER YUM.

To finish our dinner I had a tiramisu, it was good but nothing exceptional.
Enough to cut the saltness from our previous dish though. 😜

The verdict

I would totally go again, loved their food and service.
Our waiter was super funny and friendly.

The house gets super busy so I highly recommend you to book.

We didn’t book, but we arrived there 10 minutes before opening and they managed to give us a table, lucky us. 🙂

Exact location: maps.google.com/maps/sWArZF9RyZH2

More information: www.romasparita.com/en/


You can check more posts here on the blog about my holidays in Europe and also everything I published about Italy or Rome.

La Strega Nocciola Gelateria • Rome

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La Strega Nocciola - entrance.
La Strega Nocciola – entrance.

You know the first thing that comes to my mind when I remember my European holidays?

GELATO! Why? Because it was soooo hot during summer there! ☀️
As we’re in Italy, there’s nothing better to cool down than an authentic Italian gelato, right?

We were swimming around that ocean of tourists at Piazza di Spagna when Hubby (always him :P) suggested to have yet another gelato (second of the day) to recover our energies.

The chosen place was La Strega Nocciola Gelateria and it was absolutely great!

My order

This place was full of fruit flavours, so we thought would be a good opportunity to try a couple of them.

We got a large cup to share with the following flavours: lemon, mango, and blueberry.

Lemon, Mango, and Blueberry.
Lemon, mango, and blueberry gelato.

It was a great choice!

All flavours were super rich, you could totally believe you’re having the fruit instead of a gelato (as long as you forget the nutritional facts, of course :P).

Thumbs up for the blueberry one, that was my favourite.
Hubby is crazy for lemon ice cream so he was sold since the beginning. 😜

The verdict

This is definitely a must-go place.
It is on a calm street, a few blocks away from Piazza di Spagna and the buzz, perfect for some relaxing time.

Exact location: maps.google.com/maps/ggHGyPiMAqH2

More information: www.lastreganocciola.it


You can check more posts here on the blog about my holidays in Europe and also everything I published about Italy or Rome.

Hedera Gelateria • Rome

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Hedera - entrance.
Hedera – entrance.

Hedera was another perfect gelato stop.

Hopefully you are not surprised to know gelato in Italy is a serious thing, right? 😜

The store is super cute, with a vintage look that invites you in straight away.
In addition to the great variety of gelato flavours, you can also find granitas there (just in case you want something different)!

My order

As we were quite full after our delicious lunch at Da Romolo, this time we decided to share a small cup.

Just to refresh ourselves a bit before exploring more of Rome in the afternoon!

Our choice was: Chuo (70% dark chocolate) and Hedera Top (their secret flavour).

Chuo (70% dark chocolate) and Hedera Top secret flavour.
Chuo (70% dark chocolate) and Hedera Top (their secret flavour)

It’s hard to find exact words to describe both flavours, but let me give it a try:

The dark chocolate one was super rich and extremely chocolatey, as a good quality chocolate gelato should be.
It may be too bitter in case you are not a dark chocolate fan, otherwise go for it, you will love!

For the top secret flavour … OMG! What was that? I can’t describe but I believe there is a bit of pistachio and spices in it. I asked the owner what was in that flavour and he said it is “top secret” and he couldn’t reveal. 😜

The only thing he could tell me was if there was any nuts, in case I was allergic, and indeed there was, so by the flavour I suppose it was pistachio.

The verdict

In case you are around the Vatican this is a perfect place to have a stop and enjoy a delicious Italian gelato.

I loved their gelato and service was super friendly.

In case you manage to get out of them what the Top Secret flavour is made of, please tell me!
This was one of my favourite flavours in Rome, and I’m dying to know more about it. 😅

Exact location: maps.google.com/maps/sU9dP5YeaHt


You can check more posts here on the blog about my holidays in Europe and also everything I published about Italy or Rome.