Carbone's Needs A Bar And A New Paint Job: Everything Else Is Good

Categories: Food News

Thumbnail image for Goodfellas Painting.jpg
I like this one. One dog goes one way and the other goes the other.
Did you recognize it? I wouldn't have had a friend not pointed it out while dining at Carbone's, the subject of this week's review. He turned a painting on the wall into a bit of movie trivia at my table and we all failed miserably.

On the back wall of the white-washed restaurant a medium sized painting of a man sitting in a boat with two dogs pops out in color from the other black-and-white family portraits and other photos. It's pulled from a scene in the movie Goodfellas where Tommy, Jimmy and Henry enjoy a late night supper with Tommy's mother. The meal is sandwiched between two gruesome scenes that end in the demise of Billy Bats.

I bring this up because it highlights the only issue I have with Julian Barsotti's new addition to the Highland Park neighborhood. For all the red sauce, meatballs, chicken cutlets and other Italian-American classics they offer on the menu, most of which are quite good, the space couldn't feel any less Italian. It's full of light when I want dark and cozy tones. There's no bar to sit and and enjoy a glass of vino while you wait for your tortellini.

To be honest, the place feels like it could sell high-end leather goods if you took away the sparsely merchandised cans of tomatoes and pasta on the shelves, and that massive porchetta hanging in the meat refrigerator and dripping on a sheet pan just behind the counter.

I mean no disrespect. I'm not asking for red-check table cloths and a portrait of Old Blue Eyes hanging on the wall. And I don't want to end up with a pen in my neck, or at the bottom of the Trinity River wearing cement shoes. (Is it even deep enough to drown a man?) But I can't help but think something is left on the table the way Carbone's is laid out presently. Still, it's a nice followup for Barsotti on the heels of Nonna, which has earned consistent praise for its delicate pastas and freshly baked bread. And it brings a level of execution to a comforting style of cooking Dallas has desperately needed.

Location Info

Carbone's Fine Food and Wine

4208 Oak Lawn Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Restaurant


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7 comments
just sayin'
just sayin'

And this guy is saying "whataya want from me?". I so want one of those to hang at my place.

Scott Reitz
Scott Reitz

Carbone's opened in mid April and has had plenty of time to settle. The food and service showed none of the typical signs of a restaurant still working through its kinks. Not to mention the review was almost entirely positive.

Scott Reitz
Scott Reitz

I think Carbone's is going to be fine. I'm just wishing it was something a little different becuase the quality and style of cooking you see there is something Dallas definitely needs more of.

Jon from TJs
Jon from TJs

 hold on, there is some middle ground. if an establishment is taking someone's money, they can and should be reviewed.  scott's review talked about direction its headed and model.  my comment was replying to a previous commenter. I don't know a lot but i know fish.  And i know Julian is serving a great fish dish for his Sunday dinner this weekend. I introduced him to one of my vendors for the order. And i still say the dry pasta bags and frozen sauces are the best way to eat quality pasta at home.

Will
Will

You really reviewed a place that has been open for a few short weeks? Dickhead.

Jon from TJs
Jon from TJs

 tjs seafood market next door will be great synergy:)  guys, carbone's is still in 2nd gear.  Julian has lots of plans. opening a new concept is hard. it's easier to start a chain.  doing it the right way takes some patience on the customer's end. have you heard about carbone's sunday night dinners?  last week's menu looked divine. and i recognized the painting based on 1 thing "one dog, he looka this way, the other, look the other" everyone know that's scorcese's mom playing the old lady?

joeat
joeat

I totally agree, it just is NOT working like it was not at all thought through.  Carbone's needs a lot of help if it is going to make it.

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