Judging Restaurants – La Carbonara


La Carbonara is located at 1926 9th Street, NW. (We once spoke of this place a couple of years ago but mostly just discussed the very nice Eritrean owner.) The menu seems very reasonably priced. And of course they have pizza too. For the wine fans you can see their wine list here. So any fans out there?

12 Comment

  • Not bad. Seemed to be a lot more going on upstairs but the food was good enough for standard casual italian stuff — pretty attentive service. Even got to sample some kind of cocktail they were promoting.

  • We really, really wanted to like it. But did not. I can easily make better pasta at home. The server was friendly, but the restaurant was deserted and this was on a Friday night.

  • I always wonder how these places stay in business. They are run by Ethiopian folks, but serve drastically different food. I don’t know how well an Ethiopian restauant run by native Italians would do. Just seems a little odd to me. On the flip side, it equally amazes me that there are SO many ethiopian places around 9th and U that are in business….how many ethiopian places could we possibly need in 2 square blocks??

    Also, @ NAB – what was going on upstairs? Some kind of lounge?

  • Iliveinshaw: Google “Italy in Ethiopia.” There’s a bit of history between them.

  • @ IliveinShaw – A good # of Non-Japanese Restaurants serve Sushi regularly and no one bats an eye. Most of the “Mexican Restaurants” here are run by Salvadorenos. The Italian presence in Ethiopia is well documented.

  • schweeney – – Since you’ve pointed out that I am no history buff, maybe you can explain the relationship between Ethiopia and Mexico for me?? El Sol, next door to La Carbonara is Ethiopian owened as well. I’m just saying maybe they should stick to a cuisine they really truly know – ps the Italian occupation in Ethiopia was for about 4 years or so….not nearly long enough for their cuisine to rub off.

    But then again, we’ve already got a ton of Ethiopian places.

  • I’m the furthest thing from a food snob. I mean it really doesn’t take much to make me happy as far as food goes. And that place fucking sucks.

  • per the post the owners are eritrean, not ethiopian


    eritrea was an italian colony for several generations. my wife’s uncle visited there a few years ago, it is full of crazy early-1900s italian architecture. there’s an italian restaurant in eritrea whose name escapes me that is considered by some people to be one of the best and most authentic italian restaurants in the world.

    so this is not as nutty as you’d think.

  • i think this is what i was thinking of. it’s hazy but i believe there was something on NPR about it a few years back. wacky i admit.


  • $38 for Kendall Jackson–blow me!

  • @ Iliveinshaw- I can explain the Ethiopia to Mexico link. “Shaft in Africa” starring Richard Roundtree was partially filmed in Ethiopia. Richard Roundtree was in “Boat Trip” with Stephen M. Porter, who was in “Rails & Ties” with Kevin Bacon and Jim Cody Williams. Jim Cody Williams was in “Traffic” with Salma Hayak- one of the greatest Mexican born international stars today, and the film was also filmed partially in Mexico. Therefore, Ethiopia=Mexico.

  • Thanks Solong…brilliant connection. I honestly don’t know why I didn’t think of that sooner. Ha!

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