/Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

I had a great meal at Al Pompiere in Piazza Cenci in Rome on Saturday. The place was packed for Primo Maggio and the wait for our food seemed interminable, but it was worth it. The spaghetti alla carbonara was excellent: the pasta was perfectly al dente, the guanciale was salty and cripsy, and the eggy condiment was pleasantly light (or so I convinced myself).

Al Pompiere
Via di Santa Maria de’ Calderari, 38 – Rome

2016-01-07T03:39:42+00:00 May 3rd, 2010|Categories: Carbs, Daily Food Photo, Gastronomic Traditions, Pork, Restaurants, Rome & Lazio|14 Comments


  1. shayma May 3, 2010 at 12:57 pm - Reply

    I dont eat pork so I wouldnt know about the taste of carbonara, but my friends who love this dish say that Maccheroni and Perilli in Testaccio make a luscious carbonara.

  2. Eleonora May 3, 2010 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    Love Pompiere, but hardly ever remind myself to go there. Thanks for the prompt!


  3. Tom May 3, 2010 at 3:00 pm - Reply

    Now that’s a carbonara worth its salt(iness)! It’s positively glistening, isn’t it? Or as Lidia Bastianich would say, “It’s smiling at you!”

  4. Katie May 3, 2010 at 3:53 pm - Reply

    @Elenora It’s a great place to bring friends and clients who want very good cucina romana. I spared my guests the horror of watching me eat coda alla vacinara with my hands and stuck with the pasta.

    @Shayma what do you thing of Maccheroni? I cannot stand that place. I’ve never had it Perilli but I’m open to that.

    @Tom it WAS smiling at me. I love LB!

  5. Mamma Parla May 3, 2010 at 7:58 pm - Reply

    I remember this restaurant…we had a very nice meal there a few yrs ago with some of your friends – must visit again!

  6. megan May 3, 2010 at 7:54 pm - Reply

    Or as Marco would day – “It was winking at me” (“Mi faceva l’occhiolino”). That’s so much cuter!

  7. Katie May 3, 2010 at 8:05 pm - Reply

    @megan that is adorable

    @Mamma Parla yes we did and yes we should.

  8. shayma May 4, 2010 at 6:47 pm - Reply

    oh gosh. i adore it. (are we still friends? tee hee) i love their ravioli w fiore di zucca, their trofie alla norma and trofie al tartufo nero. and my friends love Maccheroni’s carbonara. have made trips from London just to have their carbonara again! their service is a bit uneven, but it’s my go-to restaurant- even for guests. what was your experience like?

  9. The Five Day Bender with Şemsa November 14, 2010 at 2:01 am - Reply

    […] serves two of my top 20 dishes in Rome: burrata with semi-sundried tomatoes and one of the best carbonaras around. Neither disappointed. Nor did the four types of prosciutti (heavy cured pork consumption […]

  10. […] a near pure guanciale diet one week in November, and a general, unrelenting obsession with carbonara, amatriciana and gricia. I thought reflecting on some of the best pork moments of this year might […]

  11. Melissa Santos July 1, 2011 at 11:04 am - Reply

    It’s funny but I went to Il Pompiere in May and my husband wasn’ t a huge fan of their carbonara treatment… I thought it was good but I think he might like his a little less “light” feeling and that may also be my preference. 🙂 my lamb with artichokes was good but my uncle was so-so on his ravioli. The fried starters were fantastic though, I think it goes back to your post that you have to order the right things at Rome restaurants.
    I haven’t been going to Da Giggetto anymore since people have convinced me there are much better places to eat but I really am fond of that ghetto spot, stubbornly. I’ve also had some good meals at Sora Margherita but it sounds like you think the quality there has gone downhill?

    • Katie July 1, 2011 at 12:37 pm - Reply

      the ghetto is such a tough place for food! i know a lot of visitors to rome want to eat there in order to taste the cucina ebraica, but the quality of every single place (even my beloved Nonna Betta) has declined. on the subject of Sora Margherita, yes it has gone downhill and how! the place is wildly overpriced and the quality of the ingredients could not be worse (a recent dish of inedible pajata comes to mind!). such a shame:( Pompiere is probably the most dependable of the lot, though i know there is much debate over the execution of their carbonara. as you say, it is a matter of preferences!

  12. Diane April 21, 2012 at 5:03 am - Reply

    can i still see the recipe….please…..

  13. Sarah May July 17, 2012 at 12:52 am - Reply

    I meant for $10 it is a good choice-it is about €3 at my local COOP.

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