Nestled in the back of Epcot’s Italy pavilion is Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria. Via Napoli is a sit-down restaurant that serves authentic Italian cuisine. It also happens to be one of my top 3 favorite Walt Disney World Resort restaurants!
Via Napoli has a bright and airy feel, with blue frescoes and Italian travel posters lining the walls. The focal point as you enter the dining room is the open pizza kitchen featuring 3 large wood burning ovens named after the Italian volcanoes: Stromboli, Vesuvio and Etna.
Via Napoli is well known for its pizza which is incredibly delicious, but it also has a nice variety of plated entrees. The pizza is made from flour imported from Italy along with water that is identical to the water found in Naples, which makes for an authentic and extremely tasty pizza.
Having been to Via Napoli before, I knew exactly what I was going to order before I even saw the menu! We started with the arancini (fried risotto balls filled with mozzarella & meat ragù). From our previous experience here, I knew that I would not be sharing these, so my husband and I each got our own order. They were fried to a prefect golden brown and the inside was creamy and cheesy and filled with just a little bit of the meat ragu. The sauce was smooth with just a hint of sweetness, making it the perfect complement for the savory meat and rice.
I ordered an individual Carciofi pizza (white pizza, artichoke, fontina, mozzarella, truffle oil). The truffle oil makes this pizza so decadent and the cheeses and artichokes blend perfectly together. I must admit that I am not a huge fan of artichokes and before this pizza, I had only eaten them mixed with spinach into a dip. Something begged me to order this pizza and I am so glad that I did, it was fantastic!
My husband wasn’t in the mood for pizza so he opted for a pasta dish and he picked a winner: Paccheri alla Crema con Pollo (large macaroni tubes, cream, chicken, pancetta). This was so delicious and filling! The pasta was lightly covered in the cream sauce but wasn’t swimming in it, and the crunchy pancetta lent a little bit of saltiness to the dish. The picture is very deceiving because it does not look like it would fill you up, but it does. I tried a bite (or two…) and if I wasn’t set on the pizza, this would have been a great alternative.
Just for fun, here are pictures from 2013 of the appetizer Mozzarella Caprese (vine ripened tomato, fresh milk mozzarella) and an individual Piccante pizza (tomato sauce, Italian spicy sausage, mozzarella)
My older daughter ordered a salad for her appetizer and a plain pizza. The Insalata Verde (cucumber, celery, green apple, spinach leaf lettuce, citrus dressing) which was good. It was light and fresh. Her entrée was Pizza Margarita with Fresh Mozzarella and Tomato Sauce which she enjoyed as well. If you are not in an adventurous mood to try one of the pizzas with toppings, the Pizza Margarita is the way to go!
My younger daughter ordered a fruit cup and Spaghetti with Meatballs. I ended up eating most of the fruit cup but she ate every bit of the spaghetti, and this is a kid who always wants butter on her pasta instead of red sauce!
On to the desserts, we couldn’t resist! That reminds me, you want to leave some room for dessert here! Sadly I did not follow my own advice and I ordered vanilla gelato thinking that it would be a small dessert that I could do after such a big meal. I got 2 generous scoops of gelato and a nice little piece of almond brittle. I could not eat all 2 scoops but it was delicious!
My husband couldn’t resist the traditional Tiramisu (Mascarpone cream, espresso coffee, lady fingers, chocolate). It had a stronger coffee taste than other tiramisu that we have had but that wasn’t bad since he finished it!
My older daughter had Coppetta di Gelato (chocolate or vanilla Italian Sundae) which she gladly finished!
My younger daughter had Ruota di Carretto (Vanilla Gelato Cookie Sundae). When it was served, it was not what she expected as the cookies were more of a light cake texture. It was served with a second scoop of gelato on the side. After a little bit of coaxing she decided to try it, and of course she loved it! Who wouldn’t love vanilla gelato sandwiched between 2 pieces of cake?!
Here is a kids menu, but it is from 2013 so the prices may not be accurate.
Via Napoli also features Italian beers, wines and sodas, flights, sangria, and aqua fresca. But we did not try any of those this trip.
You can probably tell that I love Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria. We have eaten here a number of times and have never been disappointed. I highly recommend it for either pizza or the other entrée options.
Have you eaten here? What did you have? Share with us in the comments below!