I distinctly remember three things happening on the first day I was in Naples.
(And yes I know it's actually Napoli when in Italy or you are a speaker of that beautiful language; but I am in Melbourne and not one of those annoying people that need to drop in the accent of a word that doesn't belong to me. See Babka bakery on Sunday morning for example: 'Can I please have a cwa-son?')
I caught a man trying to pick Mr Tea's pocket on the bus about five minutes after we arrived.
I caught Mr Tea blushing as we were checked into our hostel by a gorgeous, raven-haired cross between Monica Bellucci and Sofia Loren circa 1960, called Carrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrla, who referred to him as Roberrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrto.
I ate the best pizza I'd ever had.
I also remember the first time I ate at I Carussi II because it transported me back to Naples. No one tried to rob me but there were a lot of gorgeous Italians working there and the pizza was superb.
Tucked down the end of Barkly Street in St Kilda that is almost the suburb of Elwood, I Carussi II is the little brother of the original I Carussi in Brunswick.
The restaurant has linen draped tables extending onto the pavement, minimalist decor and one page paper menus. The smell of pizzas cooking coming from the door would challenge even the most hardened carb-avoider.
The pizzas are thin based little numbers with simple, fresh toppings: buffalo mozarella, whole leaves of basil, smoked salmon, sopressa, gorgonzola, tiger prawns. Are you getting the idea? The wine list is not huge, but is in Italian so don't be shy if you need to ask one of the friendly wait staff for a recommendation.
There is antipasto if you fancy a nibble before the main event - lovely cold meats, olives, roasted peppers - and three very simple salads to accompany your pizza.
My tip would be to share a pizza and a salad so you have room for one of the dessert pizzas, such as peach and white chocolate.
You would think that pizza is one of those things that would be hard to mess up, yet so many restaurants do. I Carusi II on the other hand have the right to bust out their Italian accents when it comes to their pizzas, they are the real deal and obviously made with amoré.