Shipscook’s Italian Job – Arrival

The cab arrived at 2am to take us to Gatwick. I think it would be fair to say that Gatwick Airport is my least favourite place on Earth (with Newark and Luton following close behind). Security was remarkably free of incident, but I still managed to have an argument with the idiot waiter in Garfunkels, who was unable to grasp that the correct answer to “I ordered a cheese omelette not scrambled eggs” was not to claim that it was what I had ordered, but to apologise and bring me the damned omelette, which was eventually brought with very bad grace.

Mercifully I found myself drifting in and out of consciousness throughout the flight, before arriving at Naples Airport. I have to admit that I had been dreading our arrival here as the last time we passed through it have been a complete cake and arse party of queues with three flights worth of baggage on one carousel and none on any of the others, this time was fine with just a perfunctory passport check and a relatively easy baggage pick up.

Still knackered after our early morning start I once again drifted in and out of consciousness as we drove along the Amalfi Coast to Sorrento, the blue Mediterranean, sparkling against the mountains it really is a beautiful part of the world. We arrived at the Grand Hotel Capodimonte just in time for lunch, which we enjoyed on the terrace overlooking the incredibly pretty Bay of Naples.

The Bay of Naples from the Bouganvillea Restaurant

Prezzo, Epping

We fancied a night out yesterday, but still being a bit skint after Christmas needed to find something on the budget side. Fortunately those nice people at the upmarket pizza and pasta joint Prezzo, had sent us some ‘All pizzas a fiver’ vouchers and as luck would have it there is a branch not far from us in Epping.

The restaurant is situated in the former Thatched House pub in Epping High Street. I think the building itself is about 200 years old and its transformation into a branch of Prezzo has been managed with some taste, nice wooden floors, art prints and so forth. To see the pub as it used to be take a look at the Dead Pubs website here:

http://deadpubs.co.uk/EssexPubs/Epping/thatched.shtml

Yes I know Prezzo is part of a chain, but the food is really very good and with the regular offers that we get e-mailed from them or downloaded from their Facebook page, it is surprisingly economical. On to the food.  We both knew what we wanted and ordered a calzone carne piccante each. The calzone is stuffed with meatballs, chicken, mushrooms, cheese and Bolognese sauce and really tasty. It’s also huge so we declined the offer of desert to waddle off to the car.

What’s the damage? I was pleasantly surprised to find that our vouchers were even valid on a Friday night and with a glass of the house red for me, a side dish of gratinated potatoes and a bottle of fizzy water the bill came to just over £20 for the two of us.

For info on menus and locations see:

http://www.prezzorestaurants.co.uk/