Carbone Rating: 9.75
There's a lot to say about Carbone but mostly just that it was the best meal we've had in a really long time. By some miracle it's possible to eat at Carbone and not feel like you need to be rolled out of the restaurant, which is a feeling I've never experienced while eating Italian. The only real drawback to Carbone is that it's basically impossible to get a reservation unless you want to eat Sunday night at 5pm. Which you should totally do.
Very Italian, like waiting for Tony Soprano to walk in Italian. You can tell that the atmosphere is meticulously curated, between the music and the artwork on the walls, down to the gigantic menus and sketch artwork theme that goes throughout. Even the individual plates all had different designs, like they would at your Italian grandma's house.
What are the chances you'll run into a celebrity? Pretty high, but not a trashy tabloid celeb. It's more of a place for legit people like George Clooney or pre-veganism Bill Clinton.
Is the bread worth the carbs? YES. They bring a few types, one of which tastes like pizza, and instead of doing povo bread and butter they serve prosciutto, cauliflower, and chianti parmesan so you can have dinner before your dinner.
Instagram Friendly? Shitty lighting, really good food to photograph. The worst dilemma. See above.
Shoe Situation: You can totally get away with flats here but you can't look like shit.
Good for: Dinner with the parents, going out with your rich boyfriend (you may have to put out after)
Neighborhood: Greenwich Village
This restaurant has like, an absurd amount of staff. There's practically someone to butter your muffin. Yet there are no waiters, only “captains” who take care of your table. They basically picked out our food for us which would bother me if they didn't know exactly what we wanted. It's like they have a fifth sense.
Mostly business people and older people. Perfect place to take your parents, if your parents are chic.
Eggplant Torrisi – The eggplant is layered so thinly it blew my mind, and stuffed with peppers. They cut the burrata with a scissor at the table so you can see it and know that this is your special burrata, otherwise you might assume it was from the garbage.
Octopus Pizzaiolo – Didn't taste so octopussy. A little spicy and sweet and cooked very tender. The sweet peppers and potato underneath were soooo good, and there's some jalapeno, so convince your friend who avoids those not to eat hers so you can have more.
Spicy Rigatoni Vodka – Okay like, words cannot really describe how good this was, as I was craving it for at least three days after. It's sweet and spicy, cooked al dente, and overall the best pasta I've ever had.
Meatballs – Delicious. Great sauce. A must order with the rigatoni.
Charred Broccoli – The sauce was key, kind of sweet.
Halibut Piccata – Cooked with white wine, lemon and garlic. Light and flavorful but not a large dish at all.
Veal Parmesan – Only like 10 million times better than the chicken parm at Quality Italian that lived on instagram months ago and then disappeared never to be seen again.
Funghi Trifolati – These were some bad ass shrooms. The dish has onions so like, idk, be warned? If you're worried about making out later, I'd choose the onions.
Gluten Free Options
Don't worry glutards, you too will get to try the heavenly spicy rigatoni vodka because they will make your dish with gluten free pasta upon request. Unfortunately the same adjustments can't be made for the veal parm. Bitches.
We only tried one, but we hear the carrot cake is a classic as well. The espressos are large and they offer you sambuca. Like Hilary Duff said, why not take a crazy chance.
Nutella Tiramisu – Unreal, with banana rinds and lady fingers. Also, whoever created this was wise enough to know that Nutella is best in small doses.
181 THOMPSON STREET
NEW YORK, NY 10012
Phone: (212) 254-3000