I was going to go all out for my last dinner in Ischia – could I get through perhaps four courses: antipasto, primo, secondo, dolce? I was very keen to try one of Ischia’s most famous dishes – Ischian-style rabbit. While one might think that the only food on the island is sea-based, it turns out that rabbit is a popular meat there, with farmers raising them inland. After wandering through Ischia Porto and Ischia Porte for a while, I found Da Raffaele, which was one of the few restaurants that served individual portions of the rabbit. Many other restaurants require one to order an entire bunny in advance. Good, the place looked promising and busy and the restaurant’s location along Via Roma made for some fantastic people watching during my meal.
I started with Brushetta, that famous toast lavished with plenty of olive oil and beautiful tomatoes. I liked that you could order it by the piece here, perfect for the solo diner.
Pasta time! Linguine alle Vongole was exactly what I wanted. Perfectly al dente pasta with salty clams and sweet tomatoes.
And here was my secondo of Coniglio all’Ischitana. Here, portions were stewed with olive oil, tomatoes, garlic, chilli, rosemary and parsley. It was delicious if a little freaky when served with its lungs and heart intact!
I couldn’t fit in any dessert! What a shame – I bet their offerings would have been good!
Ristorante Da Raffaele
Via Roma, 29
Ischia Porto, Ischia
80077 Province of Naples
The next day, after a slow and leisurely breakfast, I checked out of the hotel, transferred to the ferry port and while waiting for the ferry, I ogled a nearby fruit stand.
Look at those stacks of cherries!
What an amazing variety of tomatoes! I wish I could have carried some back with me.
Anyway, a ferry ride and I was back in Naples. I caught the bus to the airport and then found myself there at lunchtime. Perfect. A Fratelli La Bufala (there are branches of this Neapolitan chain in London too) pre-security was a good choice.
I started with a small plate of the vegetables on display at the front. The tender dark green leaves of the Neapolitan Friarielli saltati were perfect – dark, bitter and so so moreish. Melanzana a funghetto was not with mushrooms as the same may imply but silky soft aubergine cooked with tomatoes.
A Margherita pizza was very good. Sure, it wasn’t da Michele but it was excellent for airport food.
Fratelli La Bufala
Viale Fulco Ruffo di Calabria
Aeroporto di Napoli Capodichino
I’ll just quickly mention here how fabulous the food was at Milan Linate airport too, where I changed flights both ways. Are all Italian airports like this? Ah, not just airports I’ve just discovered but also railway stations, highway rest stops and big downtown shopping districts – it’s the Ciao Ristorante! It’s self-service and affordable and the food is very very good indeed. All the airport workers lunching there were a good sign. Here’s some of my lunch on my flight out – bresaola with parmesan and rocket and a fantastic strawberry cake.
That’s it from Italy this time! All my photos from Naples and Ischia can be seen in this Flickr photoset.