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ameryhm Mar 1st, 2008 07:22 AM

Best Seafood In Naples
Along the same lines of my many threads regarding steakhouses, i am now shifting gears to seafood.

My wife and I will be in Naples in a couple of months and know that there are a few local spots that would fill the bill but which ones really stand out?

We will be staying at the La Playa Golf and Beach Resort and will NOT have a car.


NeoPatrick Mar 1st, 2008 07:37 AM

Well without a car, you'll be spending a small "fortune" on a taxi, but there's nothing you can walk to in that area. Or has LaPlaya started offering a shuttle to downtown Naples like the Ritz does? It seems I may have seen such a small bus from LaPlaya cruising Fifth Avenue South.

Most recommended restaurants do a good job with seafood -- as it's so highly requested. But I suppose Truluck's on Fifth Ave. downtown is the most "upscale" and outstanding seafood place.

And seafood is still what I think Roy's does the best. One at Bonita Bay, another in downtown Naples.

For a super casual lunch though, you could actually walk south from LaPlaya to Buzz's Lighthouse, sit on the deck over the bay and have wonderful grouper ruebens and a beer.

Ann41 Mar 2nd, 2008 07:09 PM

NeoPatrick--I went to Roy's in Naples a couple of weeks ago and was very disappointed. I had to send my fish back because it was cold (and I NEVER send food back). Instead of cooking a fresh piece of fish for me, they heated up the original, so it was dried out when it came back. And we weren't offered even a complimentary cup of coffee.

The highlight of the evening was the calamari. We should have stopped after the appetizer.

NeoPatrick Mar 2nd, 2008 07:13 PM

Out of curiosity, which Roy's were you at? Bonita or downtown Naples?

mary1007 Mar 3rd, 2008 07:50 AM

Roys at Bonita was very good when I went last summer, and the service was great too. Truluck is also a very good choice.

euroagogo Mar 11th, 2008 08:53 AM

Truluck's is fabulous! Other favorites are Chops, Campiellos (sp?) and Bice (sounds like Bee chay). All are on or around 5th Ave.

For Italian there is a great little place called Pappino's. It's on 41 in a shopping strip area.

NeoPatrick Mar 11th, 2008 09:08 AM

That's Peppino's in the Naples Shopping Center by Publix across from Coastland Mall. Wow. It seems like it should be a nice little cheap alternative for Italian to the more expensive places, except that it is actually just about as expensive as the better places, and I always think it's pretty mediocre food and atmosphere.

lindamoe Mar 11th, 2008 11:37 AM

Been going to Naples for 15 years now, just last year found a little place on 41 north up by Rooms to go called Swan River. The best crab cakes EVER. Patrick have you been?

NeoPatrick Mar 11th, 2008 01:28 PM

Only once for lunch. We each had a tuna caesar salad (great grilled tuna, the salad less great), and an iced tea. With tax and tip the bill was over $40, so it was a little "rich" for us for lunch. Have never been for dinner, but others rave about the quality of the seafood as well.

I've enjoyed lunch more right next door at the USS Nemo, which also gets dinner raves for seafood. For the longest time I thought the two places were joined -- Swan River being the fish market and Nemo being the restaurant, but I guess they are actually not related at all, and Swan River added the restaurant to their original fishmarket.

Ann41 Mar 14th, 2008 04:18 PM

It was the Roy's in Naples.

ameryhm Apr 12th, 2008 11:15 AM

Time for a fresh perspective.

While Trulucks's appears to be a heavy favorite, the fact that we will be carless during our stay lessens its value considerably.

After speaking with the concierge from the resort that we will be staying at, there are very strong recommendations for either of Turtle Club at Vanderbuilt Beach (short walk) or USS Nemo Restaurant (short cab ride).

Maxwell's would have been good except that they will close on the 25th for a 5 month renovation project.

Has anyone been to either of these places? Both were recently added to Zagats hit list and have formal reviews pending.

As always, appreciate the feedback.

NeoPatrick Apr 12th, 2008 12:27 PM

Maxwell's being closed is no big thing. I'm no spring chicken, but the average age there is about 85, and probably the renovation is to scatter the tables for easier wheel chair and oxygen tank access. The food is much like that served in a senior center -bland, bland, bland.
Can you tell I like it? NOT.

I've only been to Captain Nemo's once -- for lunch. It was good, nothing special -- but again that was just lunch. Much of the menu is Japanese or Asian inspired seafood, and my dish was sickeningly sweet -- for me. It gets a lot of raves from a group of regulars, particularly in the neighborhood. The strip shopping center atmosphere doesn't do a lot for it in my book. Here's the closest I could find for a review:

Turtle Club is a fun place with great atmosphere, mainly because it's right on the beach. If you can get an outside table, you'll be kicking sand out of your shoes. The food is average to good, certainly nothing special, but it's all about the location on the beach. Here's their website:

NeoPatrick Apr 12th, 2008 12:30 PM

Hmmm. Now that I look at the menu for Turtle Club, I realize I haven't been there for awhile. I see the menu has vastly changed to much more "gourmet" than the old basic stuff they had before -- along with prices to match the new menu. I haven't talked with anyone lately who's been there, so I'm not a very good critic for the "new" version.

In all honesty, though, considering you can walk there -- my vote would go to Turtle Club. By the way, you can book on Open Table, but I know it's usually booked up a week or so in advance. It really is popular.

Scotia Apr 12th, 2008 01:09 PM

I had lunch at The Turtle Club last month and was disappointed they no longer have their crab cakes on the menu. As NeoPatrick says, it is a fun place to eat because it is right on the beach. They do not take reservations for lunch so you may have to wait up to an hour for a table outside (in high season). You can wait outside, enjoy a cocktail until they call your name. While there, I had their Turtle Club fish sandwich. Lots of French Fries with the fish served on a hamburger type bun along with tomato etc., tasty but nothing to rave about. Haven't eaten at USS Nemo for a couple of years but I do remember having a very good lunch there, but plaza location is not as pleasant as the Turtle Club. Didn't go to Buzz's Lighthouse this year which is within walking distance of LaPlaya but was told their Grouper Reuben is not as good as it used to be. Randy's Fishmarket on 41 (probably the same distance by cab as Nemo's) has been recommended as an excellent seafood place but I have not eaten there. Every time we try, there is at least an hour wait. It is not fancy at all but is very popular

NeoPatrick Apr 12th, 2008 01:57 PM

Scotia, interesting you mention Randy's Fishmarket. I asked friends who live up that way who mentioned they go there fairly often, "how is it?" Their response, "well, we go early or late so we can get in. The food's not all that great, but there's so much of it." I always love that comment.

ameryhm Apr 19th, 2008 09:07 AM

Changing it up yet again.

Could care less about the fanciness and would prefer to keep the bill to less than the a value mortgage.

Keeping within the realm of seafood, let's just focus on indigenous fare such Stone Crabs.

Where are the best ones??

There have to be a few within a short walk to a short can ride (5 miles) from La Playa Resort. it can be one of those down and dirty, newspaper on the tables kind of places.


NeoPatrick Apr 19th, 2008 09:24 AM

When are you coming? First of all stone crab season ENDS May 15, so you're out of luck for fresh after that. Meanwhile there is no "best" with stone crab claws. They are all the same, and there is no preparation involved, so as long as the restaurant is serving fresh ones (which they all do) you're simply paying for the accompaniements. Personally my vote for the best is to buy them at a seafood market and have them at home or on a picnic table where you can get down and dirty with them for a fraction of the price of having them brought to your table on a nice plate with fine napery.

But speaking of that, I'm not sure, but if Buzz's Lighthouse does them that's as good and "down and dirty" as it gets. The Sea Witch, around the corner from there (mostly fried foods it seems to me) might be another alternative though.

By the way, I struggled to get reservations for 4 of us for dinner tonight at the Turtle Club (calling a week ago) -- but as usual, the options were 5:30 or else after 9, which doesn't work for us. I didn't realize that the Turtle Club now also owns the Bay House (on 41 at the Cocohatchee River) so we are going there instead. Will let you know how that was.

ameryhm Apr 19th, 2008 09:48 AM

To answer your question Neo, we will be arriving next Sunday but will only have the following Wednesday night to feast (4/30).
I do realize that the SC season ends shortly thereafter.

If we had a car, this would be a no brainer so it's gotta local, fresh and nothing fried.

I'll crack crabs all night long from Stone to Snow to Dungenous to AK. There has to be some place worthy of such esteem.


Scotia Apr 19th, 2008 12:18 PM

NeoPatrick, The Sea Witch restaurant is no longer there! If I recall correctly, a realtor has taken over the space.

NeoPatrick Apr 19th, 2008 12:27 PM

Duh. Yea. I knew that. What was I thinking? In fact, that isn't all that recent! Oh, and by the way, talked with a friend today who said that Buzz's Lighthouse definitely DOESN'T do Stone Crabs.

Maybe, we've been over this, but is there a reason you won't have a car? You can get a Dollar intermediate for about $20 a day all inclusive (for a week). I'm not sure how you're getting to and from the airport, but the cost of that is likely to be equal to an entire week's car rental -- not including taxis here and there between.

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