That pizza is the undisputed queen of the streets of Naples – fried or folded as unwavering street food – is out of the question. But Campania street food can have many other surprises: walking through the alleys of the truest Naples often happens to be invaded by the scent of something frying in a pot. Many small golden morsels fill a straw paper cone: it is his majesty the cuoppo, often filled ad hoc according to the customer's requests. Street food par excellence, sometimes also served in restaurants, the cuoppo was born in the 19th century to feed many people with little or nothing: it is said that the pact between families and traders was to pay for food a little at a time, but within 8 days. There are still many places that prepare fried food according to tradition: the best, however, can be found at these 8 addresses.
The best cuoppo in Naples
The place is historic, it has served generations of Neapolitans since the 1930s to current day, in particular the residents of the upper part of the city, the Vomero neighbourhood. Crocchè, arancini, aubergines, spinach, seaweed, polenta and pasta cresciuta, together with fried pizzas topped with ricotta and mozzarella, with escarole and montanare. The Acunzo family has always fried on sight and you can't last many years if you're not doing it right. For a few euros, a piece of heaven, in the popular style that is the soul of street food.
Friggitoria Vomero – via Domenico Cimarosa, 44 - facebook.com/friggitoria.vomero/
Mercato della Pignasecca
A carousel of colourful stalls and the bustling comings and goings of those who come here to shop, peeking among the stalls and shops selling fish, fresh vegetables, seasonal fruit and cured meats, dairy products and cheese, characterise this market. Among the various street food spots present, is the cuoppo, precisely the fish one of Pescheria Azzurra, a stall that offers extremely fresh fish products every day, which become even better when fried and served in a paper cone.
Mercato della Pignasecca – via Pignasecca, 28
Antica Pizzeria Di Matteo
Centuries-old pizzeria in the historic centre of Naples and a must for Neapolitan street food. Acclaim and awards in support of the goodness of the path of this small business and its protagonists who have nourished and entertained their patrons, including tourists. In addition to the pizza, folded "a portafoglio", the friggitoria is the workhorse for assortment and goodness: arancini, pasta omelettes, polenta scagliuozzi, courgette flowers (fiorilli), artichokes, zeppoline and the ever-present fried pizza. A sin of gluttony forced by the pleasure that all these delights cause, perhaps walking among churches and monuments. Worth the wait in line to be seated or to purchase food on the fly.
Antica Pizzeria Di Matteo – via dei Tribunali, 94 - anticapizzeriadimatteo.it/
Portable, in addition to the Neapolitan pizza, here you can find excellent cuoppo filled with arancini, crocchè, zeppoline, omelettes and chips; or montanare with mortadella, ricotta and chopped pistachios, or genovese ragù with mozzarella di bufala. There are many branches, the first was in Vomero, now present in other areas of Campania and Lazio, and from the rumors it seems that the advance won't end here.
Errico Porzio – via Alessandro Scarlatti, 84 – via Cornelia dei Gracchi, 27 – via Partenope, 11 - pizzerierricoporzio.it/
Antichissima Pizzeria Port’Alba 1738
The date of origin alone would be enough to understand that here we are in the history of pizza and street food. Historic centre, near the Conservatory of Music, in one of the oldest gates of the city, where young people and tourists stock up on cuoppo filled with crocchè, arancini, breaded mozzarella cubes, fried zucchini, pizzas, stuffed and unstuffed zucchini flowers, pasta omelettes. Then there's the seafood cuoppo: squid, shrimp, seaweed zeppoline, red mullet, cod, and the untranslatable "a fica a suace". You recognise the place by the scent that invades the entire street.
Antichissima Pizzeria Port’Alba 1738 – via Port’Alba, 18 - anticapizzeriaportalba.com/
1947 Pizza Fritta
A spartan and informal place to taste delicious fried pizzas. But next to the star of the place, there is also the legendary cuoppo rolled up paper cone containing zeppoline, pasta omelettes and crocchè, golden and irresistible morsels. There is also a delicious seafood version with anchovies, prawns and squid.
1947 Pizza Fritta – via Pietro Colletta, 29/31 - 1947-pizzafritta.business.site/
La Passione di Sofi
A growing number of branches in the city, in the region and also in the capital for this establishment where the all-Neapolitan ritual of fried food is officiated daily in compliance with the typical recipes. At the counter the parade is really inviting, and to tempt patrons one will find the usual array of arancini, crocchè, pasta omelettes or gnocchi, montanarine, not to mention the pizzas and calzones. And for those who are not satisfied there is the mixed cuoppo, to be nibbled on while walking.
La Passione di Sofi – via Toledo, 206 - passionedisofi.us/
Il Cuoppo – Friggitori Napoletani
The legendary Neapolitan portable cone here is filled with many fried delights to choose according to taste, from a wide range of proposals. Mozzarella, anchovies, calamari rings, chips, battered vegetables, crocchè, arancini and pasta omelettes are fried on the spot, resulting in a crispy and light dish, perfect for a gourmet break and to be enjoyed while taking a walk. Many other branches in Naples and outside the region.
Il Cuoppo – Friggitori Napoletani – via San Biagio dei Librai, 23 - facebook.com/ilCuoppoFriggitoriNapoletani
by Michela Becchi