Rating: 8 / 10
The first pizza in Napoli was always going to be a dicey affair. First impressions count, but how can you really judge how good it was until you've tried at least five others? Which is exactly why I didn't. I waited until I'd spent a week in town before individually dishing out my own scorn or praise.
Di Matteo ended up faring well.
Recommended to me by a Napoli native, well, five in fact, I had high hopes running into this establishment slap bang on one of most epic culinary streets in the world. A few yards down lies Da Carmine and further still Sorbillo. We managed to snag a table inside, showed our covid passes and settled in. Pizza Margherita, Aqua Frizzante. Grazie.
9/10 times when trying a new pizza place i'll opt for the Margherita. Despite being my usual go-to, it's a good mile-marker as to the most important things at a new place: is the crust good? is the sauce good?
If they score high marks on both you can rest easy and order something more lavish next time.
The crust at Di Matteo was light and cooked well, the cheese standard, the sauce was good but had a slight acidic tinge to it which pulled the marks down from a nine/ten. At less than 5 Eur a pie, you're really not breaking the bank trying out a few pizzerias a day and finding your own personal favourite.
That's exactly what I ended up doing, the results of which can be found here.
These recommendations are just personal opinions based on my palate, things change, chefs get fired or replaced, places open-close, relocate, so take it all with a pinch of MSG and discover your own gems too. But please do try a few of these, they have been researched exhaustively.
"Sadness is tempered by umami, grief by the motion of slurping, hope restored in the ladling of glistening, fatty broth"