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Somebody Help This Poor Girl: Best Spaghetti and Meatballs in Dallas

tarantinos_meatballs-913This gal admits she prefers fancy-pants dining. However, her brother and his wife are coming into “the big city” this weekend and they want a good plate of spaghetti and meatballs. She’s a little high maintenance, but I think we can work with her.

Hi, Nancy. I would usually ask my good friend Dean Fearing for advice, but he is out of town. Someone suggested that I write to you. I usually entertain my out of town clients and friends at Fearings. We love the bar and the restaurant and Dean always puts on a good show for us.  We also enjoy Al Biernat’s and Café Pacific. My brother and his wife are coming to Dallas this weekend (this is the big city for them!!!!) and they have expressed interested in eating Italian food. My brother is pretty plain (so is his wife!!!!!!!) and they want me to treat them to spaghetti and meatballs. In Dallas. Nonna is where we go for Italian but I don’t think they do this. Can you suggest a place also with a good wine list.

  • Kathleen McGregor

    Try Princi Italia. Very good and very casual. Mazen is a fantastic waiter.

  • Slippy

    I’m sure her “good friend” Dean Fearing has his cell phone with him– she should just text her “good friend”.

  • bigjondaniel


  • shelly


  • LJT

    Go to the original Egyptian Room…history, spaghetti AND meatballs.

  • Paul

    I try every Italian restaurant I come across and I everywhere either has a too-sweet tomato sauce, or over cooks their pasta. Apparently al dente is a completely foreign concept in this part of the country.

    Regardless if someone’s coming to Dallas take them out for something Dallas does well, not Italian.

  • ccb

    Carbone’s is casual and has a great spaghetti and meatballs.

  • Dallas Girl

    Carbones for sure. Related to Nonna, which she has already said she likes. And they have spaghetti and meatballs.

  • Johnyalamo

    Prego’s on Greenville Ave.

  • JohnM

    Try Momo Italian Kitchen on Forest Ln/Greenville Ave (really Forest & Shepherd)… They know al dente, and great food. I’ve never been able to find a decent dish of pasta in Dallas, until I read Nancy’s post here… I’m now a happy Italian transplant that can find a good dish of pasta when I need one! It’s BYOB, but who cares, food is great!

  • JohnM

    ummm… you might as well cook your own pasta and use Prego sauce in a jar…

  • B in TX

    A man who shuns big cities, loves low-maintenance women and a good plate of pasta. Seems her brother’s only flaw is having a pretentious snob for a sister.


    Well this is an interesting one. Do I dare give my 2 cents? Ok I would recommend my own place since we have been around for 33 years. I however will point you to Traverna on Knox St. more your type of crowd and Alberto does a great job. The place is always packed The food is excellent and it is casual. Enjoy! I enjoy the tagliatelle

  • chaahshldkalsd

    Carbone’s and it is not up for debate.

  • Matt


  • Anonymous

    Kenny’s Italian

  • JSSS

    I asked my good friend Luigi. He said that he always takes Mario to Princi Italia when Mario and his wife are in town, Mario’s wife, who can be a real princess at times, says Princi Italia is the peach.

  • Johnyalamo

    Yea, Alfonso’s is very underrated.

  • RCfromOC

    Bocce’s in Bishop Arts. And it’s BYOB.

  • guest

    Carbone’s. No question. The only people in town who actually understand how pasta should be cooked.

  • Ann Kennedy

    In Dallas? Spaghetti Warehouse or Carrabba’s is the best you can do. If you’re willing to go as far as Frisco, Giovanni’s (9741 Preston Rd, Frisco, TX 75034) is exceptionally good and their rolls are phenomenal.

  • Court

    Jimmy’s has literally the best meatballs. Go there buy some and some Jimmy’s marinara and fresh pasta and cook yourself

  • NKL

    Carbones is Nonna’s casual sibling- it is to die for good and does spaghetti and meatballs

  • Carley Rowling

    Oh my goodness… are you for real? Please tell me that you are kidding. Spaghetti Warehouse??? Carrabba’s?? Two national chain restaurants? Why don’t you just throw Olive Garden and Macaroni Grill into the mix. Giovanni’s in Frisco? They asked for Spaghetti and Meatballs in Dallas not Oklahoma… You need to get out more.

  • Carley Rowling

    True dat! Jimmy’s meatballs are legit!

  • Brittan

    Jimmy’s if you want to cook yourself or come to Bishop Arts and eat at Eno’s! They have great meatballs and a fun atmosphere!

  • TLS

    This is one of the snobbiest letters I’ve ever read. Just ask “where can I get good spaghetti and meatballs?” and leave it at that. I bet the sister-in-law has better skin.

  • Critic

    If you don’t want to visit Carbone’s just stay at home a cook a TV dinner, because that will be better than most of the recommendations !