What wine with Carbonara?

Using bacon, not guanciale…if it at all matters.


I’ve served champagne, rose champagne, and a high-toned/high-acid rioja before all with good success. I often think champagnes well with a lot of things. With a rich dish like carbonara I think you need some acid to provide a little cut. Is this going to be the main course, or one of several?


Firstly, that’s not carbonara if you use bacon, it will be way to smoky.

With true Carbonara, I always drink Chianti Classico or Riserva, Barbera and Dolcetto work too if not modern oaken versions. The eggs and guanciale just scream for some acid.

With bacon, maybe Cornas?

I generally go with Champagne. Sometimes Chablis. Both with well, and it’s what my wife likes. I also use bacon cause I always have that in the house. I’m cool with it not being “carbonara”… It’s still tasty.

Champagne is a good idea, particularly rose. I also like Dolcetto or Barbera, too.


How much garlic? That tends to kill most reds and many whites when pairing with a dish like Carbonara, imo.

Regardless I’d probably go with both a Champagne & a bottle of Muscadet, have some fun seeing which one works better.

IIRC, there is no garlic in a carbonara.

Now, OTOH, if one likes garlic in one’s carbonara, then please, by all means!


Ingredient for Marcella Hazan’s Carbonara Sauce recipe:

1/2 pound pancetta, cut as a single
1/2-inch-thick slice, OR
its equivalent in good slab bacon
4 garlic cloves
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 large eggs
1/4 cup freshly grated Romano cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-
Reggiano cheese
Black pepper, ground fresh from the mill
2 tablespoons chopped parsley

The “classic” pairing is Frascati. I like Soave Classico and Verdicchio. I would not pour red. Closest I’d come is a rose Champagne.

Dude, we’re talking a very rich dish due to lipids from the cheese, pancetta/bacon and eggs. You need to pair it with a wine that cuts that down I.e. high acidity of really complements it with its own buttery flavors.

That means Riesling, flinty Chablis, or sparkling wine for acid or barrel fermented and/or aged Chardonnay, Viognier, Rousanne and/or Marsanne based wine.

The Food Carbonarieri are out in force in this thread.

Ah…one of those polarizing dishes I see!

Agreed that traditional Carbonara uses guanciale and eschews garlic. So, for better or worse, I used bacon but left the garlic out.
Sautéed a good 1.25 pounds of bacon and a small onion together until the bacon was medium well. In a bowl, mixed Parmigiano, Romano & cracked pepper. Added the drained bacon/onion. Cracked six eggs on top and gave everything a good stir. Added a pound of al dente thin spaghetti plus a bit of the pasta water and a handful of chopped parsley. Turned out pretty damned well.

Wine ended up being a 2011 Pasquale Pelissero Dolcetto d’Alba. The acidity went great with the pasta and the fruit countered the smokiness of the bacon a bit.

Thanks for the suggestions.

Sounds deelish!