Eating & drinking in Napoli, Italia – Seafood

We arrived in Napoli around noon. It was pouring rain and we were dragging around our suitcases in the maze of the city’s cobbled and slippery streets. We were damp, tired & hungry and we couldn’t find our hotel. So we stopped in a little trattoria on via Tribunali, sat at the bar and asked for ‘vino per favore’ (or what we hoped would be understood as ‘a glass of wine to save our lives please’).  The guy looked at us and our ridiculous touristy looks and poured two glasses of -what we later understood was- FALANGHINA, one of the Campania region’s most famous white wines. Its nose was floral & sweet while the mouth had the acidity of a muscadet. How unexpected! A few days and many glasses of Greco di Tufo, Fiano di Avellino and Falanghina later, we were hooked on Neapolitan white wines.

There are at least 2 reasons to love these wines:

1. THEIR TERROIR

You see, Napoli is a city that is stuck in between a volcano, the Vesuvio, and a magnificent & sunny bay. In altitude, the vineyards are planted on volcanic soils and benefit from a cooler temperature that allow the grapes to ripen (thanks to a glorious sun) without losing their acidity. The wines are extremely aromatic yet remain very refreshing. Which is what you’d want to drink in a city were the sun shines hard 250 days/year.

2. THE FOOD

We’ll never know what came first, the hen or the egg but I am sure the white wines there wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the bay’s amazing seafood (nor would the seafood be so brilliantly prepared if not to match the delicious wines). One thing is sure: I never ate that many different vongoli in my entire life. Clams, mussels, octopus, prawn, squid, lobster, swordfish.. you name it. They all made an appearance on our plates. See for yourself:

And this is what remained in our plates!

There is no sincerer love than the love of food.
George Bernard Shaw

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