An open kitchen churns out wood-fired pizzas and fresh-made pastas at this casual Sicilian-American chain.. In Short Decorated with family photos of founders Damian Mandola and Johnny Carrabba, the open dining rooms pack groups of friends and extended families into four- and six-person tables and booths; smaller parties or couples can grab stools at the open kitchen's adjoining bar to watch chefs make dinner. The traditional southern Italian menu offers grill specialties like steak Marsala and fire-roasted chicken breast with sun-dried tomatoes; pasta dishes include fettuccine Alfredo and garlic-sauteed shrimp with linguine.
Three years ago we went there and loved the place. Two weeks later we went back and it was just terrible. Yesterday April 9th we went back to try them again. It was far greater than we expected for the appetizer to the main meal it was fantastic. Our waitress, Ashley, was great. We will make that a regular stop from now on. The two cooks, Damian Mandola and Johnny Carabba have really turned this restaurant around.
The food and ambience at Carrabba's are not bad, but calling it one of Charlotte's most romantic restaurants is a stretch I think. Too many kids and too much noise to be considered a romantic hangout. Still, the food is good and if you hit it at the right time I suppose you could have an intimate conversation with your significant other.
You call this Italian???.
IF you folks think this is the best Italian in town, you apparently haven't had the opportunity to eat good Italian food. Portofino and Mama Ricotta are much better, and much more authenic.
Why call ahead.
We called for a large party(10) and were told that they do not take reservations. They said they did take call ahead seating so we did that. We arrived when we told them we would arrive. One hour and 15 minutes later we were seated. So my question is "Why Call Ahead?" And why cannot a hostess/host plan the movements better. Upon arriving we were told 15 minutes.
Carraba's has the best Italian food on earth! This is the best place if you want a change from the usual family-owned restaurant with good food but small portions and a lack of atmosphere. I've visited both locations (Pineville & Uptown) and the service was incomparable. The bread and oil with herbs gets you started and the food is prepared right before your eyes (with a good seat). I've waited tables before and, of course, am a picky diner, 2 thumbs up. This is a monthly gathering spot for my friends & me and nice date spot too.