With Naples being what many consider the birthplace of pizza we had to grab one last pie before we left Italy. In fact this was one of the main reasons we spent our last day in the city. Deciding exactly which place to go is a little overwhelming with an almost unlimited array of choices. Our decision came down to two places, Antica Pizza Port’Alba and Gino Sorbillo. Both have great reviews and were near our hotel. After spending the morning in the museum and checking out the shops along Via Trebunali the skies opened up on us with an unexpected hail storm. Unfortunately neither restaurant was open yet so we hid out in a welcoming church. While dodging the storm we did some more research and realized we were luckily right near Gino Sorbillo.
As soon as the clock struck noon we slipped out of the church and headed to the pizzeria, only to find it was not yet open. We waited out the remaining half hour under a medieval looking overhang, near some tourists rubbing a lucky statue. Once Sorbillo opened we were one of the first inside. The cramped dining room is dominated by a traditional wood fired pizza oven that welcomes you as you enter.
Once seated we perused the menu and were a little overwhelmed by the options but decided to keep it simple. First, I ordered a light Italian beer. It was not too heavy, which was good to have for lunch. We decided to each order one pizza, although even considered ordering three pies between us to share just in case. It seemed like only seconds later our pizzas arrived piping hot and unsliced. I am morally against eating pizza with utensils but, much to Micky’s delight, that was the trend with the locals. I can see how the thin Neapolitan-style pizza may warrant a fork and knife, as it can be a little soupy in the middle, thus hard to pick up and fold properly. Nevertheless, I cut my pizza into four slices and dug in.
I enjoyed the Margherita - classic tomato sauce, mozzarella, and fresh basil. The flavors were great, the sauce tasted very fresh, the crust was flavorful with a good chew, and the cheese was plentiful; but I was not blown away.
Micky ate the Bianca Neve - or a "white" pizza with only mozzarella, ricotta, and fresh basil. It, too, had a chewy crust and though there was no sauce, the cheese was creamy and gooey and perfect with just a drizzle of olive oil. She loved it.
Perhaps my expectations were a little too high after reading stories of "life changing pizza experiences", or was something else going on? Apparently we were in the wrong Sorbillo pizzeria!! The Sorbillo family is quite prolific and there are three Sorbillo pizzerias on the same block! In our haste to get out of the storm, and with some conflicting pictures coming up in Google, we were about half a block from the place we intended to eat at, Gino Sorbillo. The Sorbillo we ended up at was also very popular with both locals and tourists and had a line queued up by the time we left. I enjoyed this pizza quite a bit, but it did not change my life or ruin my taste buds for all other pizza. Would Gino’s have been on another level? I guess we will never know...
Total Rating: 4
Food: 4, Price: 5, Service: 3, Ambience: 3, Accessibility: 4