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Spaghetti Bar (CLOSED)

Restaurants, Italian Balham

Time Out says

Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that venues remain open.

Please note, Spaghetti Bar has now closed. Time Out Food editors, June 2019.

Want cute and quirky? You’re in the right place. Spaghetti Bar – occupying the space once home to Casa Diego – is a cosy room with warm lighting, lively music and sawn-in-half chairs coming out of the walls. Lampshades are made from upturned colanders. Spatulas are fastened hither and thither, garlic and onions are strung from the blackboard. It’s charming. So it’s a pity the pasta isn’t up to scratch. I sampled several bowls, each the same: starchy and bloated, the effect of cooking at too low a temperature and for too long. Sauces were no better: a ‘carbonara’ with undercooked guanciale (pancetta’s fatty cousin) and an excess of onion; others that were under-seasoned and bland.

Best of the ‘Italian tapas’ section (aka starters) was the aubergine parmigiana, with its nicely soft veg centrepiece and plenty of bubbling cheese. Meatballs, heavily bulked out with breadcrumbs, were solid, rather than sensational. But if it’s carbs you’re after, stick to the gnocchi. With just a sharp, basil-spiked tomato sauce and plenty of melted cheese, it’s simple, but perfectly decent. In short, if you come to Spaghetti Bar, order anything bar the spaghetti.


Address: 9 Hildreth St
SW12 9RQ
Transport: Tube: Balham
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