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please help ny foodie going to naples

Going to naples over christmas, love all types of food (adventerous eaters). Let us know your favorites! Thank you

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  1. Well, Naples is not exactly adventurous territory in culinary ways or otherwise...heh! But, you'll find excellent fresh fish dishes at USS Nemo's on Tamiami Trail North (U.S. 41) and how could I overlook Truluck's on 5th Avenue South for the stone crab claws, a real treat...nice Persian restaurant called "Bha Bha!" on Vanderbilt Beach Road in North Naples...excellent Cuban at Havana's at corner of Airport Road and Immokalee Road and another very good one is Fernandez de Bull on Airport Road South. Have not been there yet but have heard stellar comments about Escargot 41 on Tamiami Trail North. Sorry, I just cannot in good faith recommend any Italian or Chinese restaurants in Naples to someone from NY!

    1. I agree with Val's recommendations however I would suggest Campiello for Italian. I just ate there last week and dinner was delicious. It's not your standard Italian American menu and they have a wood burning oven. Reserve immediately, if not sooner.
      I would also recommend Chops. It's a hip atmosphere with excellent fusion cooking. I particularly like the grouper, which of course is our local fish.
      Bleu Provence has good French bistro, but of course you can have that in NY.

      For lunch, try Grouper & Chips for the best fried grouper.

      1 Reply
      1. re: RevrendAndy

        yep to Campiello...I just haven't been there in years so couldn't give a recommendation based on any recent visit! Good to know that they are still up there.

      2. I am a big fan of Campiellos (Italian) but we have only had lunch there but its always been very good. Handsome Harry's is also a favorite and the chef is really creative.

        1. Don't forget Chrissy's (in Bayfront - not wildside on Pine Ridge) for breakfast or lunch. You WILL get a seat at Bayfront, whereas the other is generally too crowded. Any of the specials are supurb!

          1. There is an off-the-beaten-track restaurant in Naples called The Real Macaw. Carribean-themed food, some caged birds as decor on the outskirts, somewhat hard to find the first time -- make sure you have good directions and bring a cell phone. Used to be cash only, but by no means inexpensive. Wonderful hot cornbready madeleines to start -- I'm blanking on what they call them... Good food, some of it spicy if asked. Definitely unique, not at all like all the other places along 5th with more hoity-toity atmosphere that imitate places you can go to in NYC.

            3 Replies
            1. re: nosh

              Kids will love the macaws! I think there are 2 or 3 there and the owner regularly brings them around if anyone wants to hold them. It is not cash only anymore and their Kobe mini-burgers are good. It is one of the few places you can get sweet potato fries. I have only eaten from the bar menu but I think the apps are great.

              Caution on going on Sunday nights. Not for the timid (or children).

              1. re: sparkalina

                What goes on at The Real Macaw on Sunday nights? Maybe I should make a reservation now!

            2. Campiello's is wonderful food if you like really rich dishes. They do not skimp on the fat, but it's worth every gram. I've never had a bad meal there. I love their brussel sprouts side dish. Their sommelier really knows his stuff and is very helpful. He loves to chat about obscure wines and gets excited when he chooses The Right One for you. Cafe Lurcat is very good too.

              1. The biggest disappointment in Naples is the lack of adventure when it comes to getting a fun meal. Ethnic food is poor at best.I am a retired chef and now go on vacations elsewhere just to eat.Naples is consistent at producing the worst chinese food of anywhere I have ever been. The few Thai places are average at best but acceptable. One chain deli that is very average. Plenty of overpriced steak houses and fifth ave spots that think they are creative,but overpriced and bland.No good Indian,Italian, spanish,mexican,etc.(except for the small taco stands catering to the working people of dishwashers and farm workers and the occasional adventure seeker).There is a good greek restaurant on Bonita beach road that is family owned called Zorbas, but these places are few and far between. I am not a food snob, I can go for a five star dining night to a street dirty water dog on a NYC street corner as long as it is made right.I just feel Naples just doesn't get it

                3 Replies
                1. re: traumachef

                  You are SO right, traumachef! So much of the food is dumbed down too to appease the retirees, it's horrid. It is a vast culinary wasteland. I'll be trying Zorbas sometime soon, so thanks for that tip; how's their falafel?

                  1. re: Val

                    they don't have falafel being greek, but they do have a good gyro and a great lunch special with a delicious greek salad. they also have an appetizer special that is excellent, too much for one though. They sell the best imported feta in Florida, but you have to ask for it and it only comes in a 3 pound tub. But it is worth it. This place is family run and the service is superb as is most of the food and I don't even like greek that much, but I do like things done right.

                    1. re: traumachef

                      Falafel is Middle East in origin but I have had it in 3 or 4 Greek restaurants and they also offer it at St. Katherine's Greek Festival here in Naples so it may be considered Greek food nowadays, I guess. I've had it at S'Agapo Greek restaurant in Naples (too greasy) but their Avgolemono soup is the bomb and I've had it at Pelagos in Naples and it's crunchy and delicious but Pelagos' Avgolemono soup is terrible. Hope to try Zorba's very soon, falafel or not!

                2. well we drive over there quite often from Miami and we have two favorites. On the main drag of downtown naples, there is a lovely Tapas place called Cafe Barcelona. Although the menu is by no means inventive, however it is authentic and fresh, the service is terrific and they have awesome Sangria. We also enjoy ROY's which is a chain, however after eating at the orginal roys in Honolulu, this one did really well and capturing the spirit and we have had a couple of good meals there.

                  We also enjoy driving over to Sanibel and Captiva Island, lots of funky restaurants!

                  1. After a difficult time finding a place to have dinner on a rainy night in Naples, DH and I stumbled upon the Greek Gourmet, and it turned out to be the BEST GREEK FOOD we have ever had, and we have had Greek food in at least five states. It was so good that we went back the next day for lunch too! I think it's on Tamiami Trail (the main road), across the street from the hospital and next to a Dairy Queen. It is totally unassuming, and was one of the best meals I have ever had anywhere, at any price.
                    Try the keftedes (greek meatballs) appetizer - sounds ordinary, but so not ordinary tasting! The moussaka and spiced green beans that were served with it were both to die for. We were too full to get around to the baklava, but it looked mighty good.

                    For an upscale place, Chops is excellent, but not more than other trendy places in other cities. If you're looking for adventure, skip Chops.

                    When we were last there, I was pleased to see Naples was getting a Ted's Montana Grill, but it was opening the day after we left so we didn't get to eat there. I've eaten at the one in Tallahassee, and though it's not adventurous, it is great for comfort food - kind of like a cross between Cracker Barrel and Tony Romas, but much better.