Friday, July 8, 2011

A Dining Review: Via Napoli

One of the newest restaurants to open up in Walt Disney World at Epcot is Via Napoli. 

Here they are well known for their pizza, as it is as authentic to real Italian pizza as you are going to get in Walt Disney World.  The restaurant brings in real Italian ingredients and the pizza is made with water that is similarly made up of the same pH levels as to what is actually found in Naples.  The pizzas are also cooked in these huge wood stoves that literally only take minutes to bake. This is as close to Italian pizza as you're going to get without actually visiting Italy! 

Disney had previously been known to be lacking in the pizza department.  For the most part, the pizzas found on property were not very good, though they were edible.  (At least to me.  One of my favorite places to eat in at Disney's Hollywood Studios is Pizza Planet.)  The pizzas on property weren't anything to rave about though. 

That is until now.  I am a HUGE fan of Via Napoli! 

Obviously, I am not a pizza snob...I don't hail from Chicago or New York, places that claim they make the best pizza...I am from a town who makes their own version of pizza on cracker thin crust with provel cheese...which I enjoy immensely, but many others who are pizza aficionados turn their nose to. 

With all that being said, Via Napoli is pizza that months later, I still crave. 

My favorite pizza is their Quattro Formaggi, which is made up of 4 cheeses, mozzarella, parmesan, fontina, provolone.  This pizza I have dubbed as "Forget Your Husband Name Good."  One bite of this pizza and you forget everything that you know!  All you can concentrate on is how amazingly delicious it tastes. 

Of course they do have other really great specialty pizzas including the Prosciutto e Melone made of fontina, mozzarella, prosciutto, and cantaloupe, and the Quattro Stagioni which has eggplant, artichokes, prosciutto, and mushrooms on it. 

You can also create your own pizza, starting with a Margherita (tomato, mozzarella, and basil) and then you adding each additional topping of your choice. 

If you are not a fan of pizza, the restaurant does offer additional Italian dishes as well, such as spaghetti and lasagna.  

This last trip, I had the chance to try their family style house salad, which is only available for groups of 2 or more and is served exclusively with the pizza for $5 per person.  The salad includes leaf lettuces, roasted red peppers, marinated mushrooms, olives, peperoncini, and a red wine vinaigrette.  Not being a salad person, I thought it was just ok.  

Also, I tried the Arancini which is fried risotto balls filled with mozzarella & meat ragu.  This sounded good, but also sounded a little strange to me.  One bite though and I was sold.  They were quite delicious, though the texture of risotto threw me off a bit as I was eating it.  

For dessert, I quite liked the Zeppole di Caterina which is ricotta cheese fritters, served with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.  I liked the taste of them dipped in the chocolate sauce the best.  The next time I'm down there though, I'll have to try the tiramisu.  I am a fan of this dessert and interested in seeing what a real Italian restaurant at Disney would do with it.

In all, I find Via Napoli to be a great value of a restaurant.  Yes, the pizzas are a tad expensive on their own, but trust me, they are good.  And if you get one and share it amongst your table, plus get an appetizer or salad, you should be set with plenty of food to go around for all, without breaking the budget. 


Kelly said...

Thank you so much for the review. We are going for the first time in October and I am really looking forward to it. BTW...I hail from We do love our pizza done right.

Jessica @ Wanting Adventure said...

That looks SO good! Now I'm really hungry.

Anonymous said...

Loved the Quattro Formaggi pizza...our server (Massimo <3) recommended prosciutto on pizza ever!