Travel like a local

Starita

ITALIAN RESTAURANT

I went for lunch on a slightly wet Thursday and was seated immediately and had a pizza in front of me only a few minutes later. I imagine at peak times you will have to wait as it's one of the highest rated pizzerias in Naples.

Starita opened in 1901 and became extremely famous in the 1950's when it was used in a Sofia Loren film. According to Daniel Young, "Don Antonio’s signature pizza is the Montanara Starita, a street food classic made by deep-frying a small disk of dough, topping it with tomato, smoked scamorza cheese, Pecorino Romano cheese, and fresh basil and finishing it off in the oven."

I went with the Montanara Starita. I think it was the first fried pizza I've ever had. I'm glad that it was a lot smaller than a normal pizza as I'm not sure I could have managed more. It was really tasty but next time I'll try their margherita.

"Starita is the only decent pizzeria in the centre of town open on Sundays, because that’s the day most Neapolitans are gathered around their nonna’s kitchen table eating rigatoni al ragù and watching Napoli play football on TV. Whereas the pizza from Sorbillo is huge and errs on the sloppy side, the pizza at Starita is firmer and has a delicious doughy but airy crust. For dessert, its speciality of fried dough balls dripping in warm Nutella is a must – work it off with a stomp around the nearby underground cemetery."

— The Guardian

"The legend of Starita will be forever linked with two idols: Sophia Loren, who portrayed a pizzaiola selling fried pizza in the 1954 film classic The Gold of Naples, and Antonio Starita, the third-generation pizzaiolo venerated by the many he’s mentored, inspired, or fed. Don Antonio’s signature pizza is the Montanara Starita, a street food classic made by deep-frying a small disk of dough, topping it with tomato, smoked scamorza cheese, Pecorino Romano cheese, and fresh basil and finishing it off in the oven. His Porta a Porta, a rectangular pizza pouch stuffed with ricotta cheese, broccoli raab, cherry tomatoes, and mozzarella di bufala, is baked both on the Via Materdei, a Naples street long synonymous with Loren and Starita, and at Don Antonio by Starita, the New York outpost he opened with protégé Roberto Caporuscio.

What to order: Angioletti; Diavola; Margherita; Marinara; Montanara" - Evening Standard


Overall rating... 8/10