I always like to have a lunch reservation when visiting Florida’s Walt Disney World parks. This is because it allows me a break from pounding the pavement and is not much more expensive than eating at counter service establishments that leave you trying to find a seat while balancing your food, drink, camera, and purse. On this visit to the Epcot, my friend Lynne and I chose to dine at Via Napoli, featuring authentic southern Italian cuisine, located in the World Showcase country of Italy.
We arrived at our 12:45 lunch and were promptly seated. The restaurant is aesthetically pleasing; frescoes painted in gorgeous colors, classical decorations, plenty of natural light, and an open kitchen that allows customers to watch the food being prepared. Huge brick oven pizzas adorned with faces painted on the top line one whole wall and are named for the three active volcanoes in Italy: Mount Etna, Mount Vesuvius, and Stromboli. Carts with fresh fruit drinks and ornate glass and stemware are located throughout. A huge communal table sits in the midst of the restaurant and I would guess Via Napoli seats maybe 400 people.
Our server provided us menus, which we had already studied online (come on, admit it, you do, too!) and I still could not choose so I just let my server pick for me. Lynne and I started our dining experience with the blood orange and strawberry fruit juice coolers. They were a bit pricey, $6 and no refills, but very refreshing on this 90 degree day. We both added a salad which was another costly offering, at $7 per person.
The salad arrived and was a blend of lettuces with chopped tomatoes, succulent red peppers, a variety of olives, cucumbers, and onions. Our salad was already tossed in dressing and it was magnificent!
Lynne and I both ended up with the same entrees; Paccheri alla Crema con Pollo, which is square flat macaroni tubes with pancetta and chicken in a cream sauce. The pasta was spectacular and the perfectly portioned. The pancetta added a nice touch and the pasta was not swimming in sauce, a pet peeve of mine. My cream sauce was the right consistency and blend of rich flavors. Many thanks to our server for making this recommendation.
Pizza was a highly popular choice as nearly everyone around us was eating them. There was even a family style pizza that was served on a 4′ metal pan. They looked delicious and the guy sitting beside me confirmed it.
As usual, we were too full for dessert; but, that did not stop most of the other customers as they appeared to be ordering the Gelato Frizzante. I spent more on my lunch than I typically like to, but it was very hot and that is how I am justifying my $6 drink. The only drawback would be the noise factor due to the large crowds and high ceilings. I would highly recommend Via Napoli but know it will break the bank.
Rating: 1 (low) to 10 (high) = 9 1/2
FYI: This restaurant does offer annual pass holders 10% off their check Monday through Friday.
For more Disney related articles:
- Epcot’s Biergarten (restaurant)- World Showcase- Germany
- Animal Kingdom
- Downtown Disney
- Hollywood Studios
- A Very Merry Christmas Party– Magic Kingdom
- Epcot (5 things to do)
- Epcot’s Le Cellier Steakhouse (restaurant)- World Showcase- Canada
- Epcot’s Flower and Garden Show
- 50’s Prime Time Cafe– Hollywood Studios restaurant