Food + Dining Main

Two Fifth Ave Legends Are Looking Better than Ever

Both Pazzo! Cucina Italiana and Truluck’s have rolled out renovations for Naples’ high season.

BY November 13, 2018

To some degree, we’re all creatures of habit, with some of us hanging onto the status quo more than others.

Pazzo! Cucina Italiana had attracted diners on the eastern end of Naples’ Fifth Avenue South for 23 years with its mix of romantic lighting and private booths—and can’t-put-your-fork-down pastas, antipasti (including several lovely crudos) and meatier entrées. But the winds of change swept through this summer, and for the first time since it opened, it shut its doors for months on end as the entire interior and exterior were redone. There are still cozy, plush seats and Venetian glass chandeliers, but this time the armchairs and settees are covered in velvet, many with bold pops of color. While the tablecloths are gone, there’s still warmth from the interplay of the new dark wood floors and chestnut tables (and the trademark ocher faux-finish walls that stayed).

The menu went through a redo as well—changes more in line with the seasonal tweaks we’ve come to expect from the restaurant—and you can breathe easy knowing old favorites like the butternut squash ravioli (those divine little pockets of silky orange with citrusy sugo and a crunch of candied walnuts) will remain.

Down the street, from its perch inside the Inn on Fifth, downtown’s premier stone crab emporium​ Truluck’s also got a sprucing up as it’s about to glide into its 15th year. The portico entrance, which is set back on Sugden Plaza (its address is technically Fourth Avenue South, where cars pull up for the valet line), was modernized with clean lines and dramatic lighting. Medium-tone woods extend now throughout the main dining room, unifying the strip of tables closest to the pedestrian square (where previously stone pavers had made it feel like a stretch of indoor-outdoor patio). The Stone Crab Lounge, the main bar in the front, also got a new glowing onyx topper and cascading chandelier—just in time for the kickoff to the pink crustaceans’ local fishing season, giving us more incentive to stop by for a visit.  

To plan a visit:

Pazzo! Cucina Italiana
853 Fifth Ave. S., Naples
(239) 434-8494

698 Fourth Ave. S., Naples
(239) 530-3131


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