For the past year I have heard many people raving about Caffe Espresso Trattoria on Chandler Street so I was very much looking forward to my first visit there. The Italian dishes are hearty, the portions large and the atmosphere was casual. It was s great first time visit for me. The bread was the way bread should be – soft inside and crusty on the outside. The salad that came with our dinners was nothing special, but I found it to be a fresh and crispy palate starter. I ordered one of the specials of the day – Spaghetti Carbonara. What sold me was our waitresses’ blunt description of the ingredients – spaghetti, pancetta, onions, cracked pepper and egg – it sounded simple, classic, and delicious. I was mesmerized by the amount of pancetta on my plate when it first arrived. My first bite however told a different story when I was hit with a palate-humbling torrent of coarsely ground black pepper. It was bold and I loved it! The spice was mellowed a bit by the finely diced onions (obviously cooked in the pancetta!) which were both sweet and savory. I would have liked more egg added only to make it a bit more creamier, but with the strong flavors from the other players in the dish, I was not disappointed.
Overall, this is definitely a place I would go again to try out other menu items. The staff was friendly and I loved that it was BYOB with no uncorking fee. With such hearty portions, coupled with gourmet-quality taste of simple Italian dishes – Caffe Espresso Trattoria is worth a look. -SB