The differences between Naples, Florida and Naples, Italy probably far outnumber the similarities. But during a visit to Moravela's, it's easy to forget that the distance between the two cities is some 5,000 miles, or approximately the length of 120,000 mozzarella sticks. The restaurant brings a slice of Italy to southwestern Florida, serving up gourmet pizzas and classic Italian dishes.
Chefs churn out veal, pasta, and seafood specialties for lunch and dinner throughout the week, including one particular dish that features clams, mussels, calamari, and whitefish all on the same plate. Additionally, the kitchen uses the freshest ingredients available to top more than a dozen different pizzas, such as the bianca, a pie built around garlic and three different types of cheese.
New York Pizza and Pasta's crew of artisan pie throwers expertly flattens doughy canvases into bubbly discs of New York–style pizza. After applying a saucy glaze and a golden coat of cheese to the colossal 20-inch crust, chefs make emergency calls to Italy for ingredient replenishments as diners dig into a feast worthy of Caesar’s panic-room buffet. Toppings such as banana peppers, black olives, fresh basil, and eggplant, can be added to the pizza for $2.50 each, and specialty prosciutto or chicken toppings are available for $4.50 each. Though not included in this Groupon, an extensive menu of appetizers, subs, and entrees brings the tastes of Italy and New York to diners' tables without the inconveniences of cobbled streets or screaming cabbies. Two glasses of velvety house wine prepares the palate for the imminent cascade of cheese. Choose two glasses of house cabernet, merlot, chardonnay, pinot grigio, or white zinfandel.
The pie purveyors at Oliveoil’s Pizza craft a menu brimming with authentic Italian fare. Dough artists shape 16-inch spheres, building them thin or thick, or tossing pies in the direction of moon gazers before slathering on sauce, cheese, and a choice of topping such as roasted garlic, gyro meat, sausage, or fresh mozzarella. Fingers grab at jumbo wings, saving a bit of buffalo, barbecue, or garlic-parmesan sauce for diligent wet-naps, or dipping cheese breadsticks in cups of bubbling soda to confuse friends and family. Guests can dine in, carry out, or have their spoils delivered for a $2 charge.
Balls of dough arc through the air as Downtown House of Pizza's chefs toss and stretch each round into the New York–style thin crust deemed the best pizza of 2012 by Metromix Gulf Coast. Creamy mozzarella cheese melts beneath toppings such as anchovies and spinach, and Grandma's Sicilian pizza melds fresh basil and tomatoes in a recipe passed through the generations on a needlepoint pillow. Downtown House of Pizza also tosses chicken wings in tangy buffalo sauce, layers grilled chicken and dressings atop crispy lettuces, and tucks meatballs and chicken parmesan into hot and cold sub sandwiches.