Naples 45 (aka The Pizza Deal of the Century… if you can hold out)

As you can tell, lunch time is very sacred for me.  I am definitely not one of those “whenever I have time to go” kind of lunch people.  With me, it’s more of an “Only 17 minutes left until the socially acceptable lunchtime of Noon” kind of thing.  I still don’t understand how people can forget to eat lunch.  I don’t care how busy I am, I could never forget lunchtime.  In fact, if I haven’t eaten by 1pm, there’s a decent chance I’ll just pass out.  I’ve never tested this theory, but I’m pretty sure that’s what would happen.

Of course, there are occasions when I do go for a “late lunch”.  Usually these days coincide with times when there is some sort of free food in the kitchen to serve as a mid-morning snack, or I’ve eaten a late or extra large breakfast.  On these days, I get to take advantage of all the late lunch specials that midtown has to offer.  If you can wait to eat, there are some great deals to be had in Midtown and hands down, my favorite is Ho Yip.  I have a soft spot for cheap chinese food, and I love by the lb. buffets- but the price always kills me.  Ho Yip solves this by lowering their price after 2:15pm.  A great deal, and my favorite place to eat a late lunch.  I’ve also heard that alot of chain delis charge less for pre-packaged sandwiches at a certain time.   

A few months ago, a reader tipped me off to another one of these late lunch specials.  Naples 45, a nice sit down pizza place in Midtown, lowers their take out slices to $1.25 after 2pm.  For months I have been waiting for an opportunity to take advantage of this deal… and finally last week I was looking for something to eat around 2pm- so I headed over to Naples 45 to check it out.

What I found, pizza porn and the +/- after the jump…

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Naples 45.  99 Cent Fresh Pizza on 43rd btw. Lex+3rd Ave. is hands down the best Pizza deal in Midtown… but it’s 99 cent pizza.  Great for the price, but not the best pizza you’ve ever had.  Charge the standard Midtown rate ($2-$2.50) and there probably wouldn’t be many takers.  Plus there are no toppings… just cheese.  I was banking on Naples 45 to be different.  These are slices that normally cost $2.75 apiece.  The cheapness is only related to the time of day… so in theory, the pizza should be great.

Well, I have to say, my expectations were totally met.  To find the cheap pizza, you have to enter through the doors of 200 Park Ave.  Once inside the lobby of the building, you’ll find a two door entrance into Naples 45.  The main dining room to the left, or the to go area on the right.  In the to go area, you’ll find a number of different square pies, all for $1.25 a slice after 2pm.  And here’s the best part of the deal- the slices have toppings.  And some of them have a lot of toppings.  On the day I was there, they had the standard mozarella, red sauce and basil- in addition to a white pizza, a roasted vegetable pizza, a pepperoni pizza and a ham with mozzarella pizza.  All of them, $1.25 a slice.

With toppings like pepperoni, fresh mozzarella and ham, the pizza doesn’t even have to taste that good for $1.25 a slice… but these pies happen to be pretty tasty.   And the slices are not skimpy either.  Each pie is cut into 6 fairly generous sized pieces (bigger than the Sullivan St. Bakery pizza).  The only negative thing I can say is that the crust on the outside of the pizza was not as good as the crust below the cheese and toppings- so if given the opportunity I would definitely request a center slice of whatever pie you order.

My biggest fear about the pizza deal at Naples 75 was that the deal was meant to get rid of pizza they hadn’t sold during lunch, so a) the pizza wouldn’t be fresh, and b) it would run out quickly.  Both of these fears were unfounded, because- and here’s another great thing- the pizza deal lasts from 2pm to 8pm!!!  That’s right… they keep bringing out fresh pies, and selling the slices for $1.25, until 8pm… making this not only the best late lunch deal in Midtown- but also the best early dinner meal.  (And of course, let’s not forget about the all important mid-day snack!)



THE + (what someone who likes this place would say)

  • $2.75 pizza, for $1.25
  • The pizza has really sweet toppings (unlike other cheap pizza in Midtown, which is usually just cheese)
  • I really like square pizza
  • Did I mention it’s only $1.25?

THE – (what someone who doesn’t like this place would say)

  • You have to wait until 2pm for the cheaper price to kick in
  • I’d rather pay extra and get the square pizza from the Jiannetto’s Pizza Truck
  • I hate a great deal (???)

Naples 45 To Go, 200 Park Ave. (45th btw. Park+Vanderbilt), 212-972-7001


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