From Dining, Hot (& Not) Spots, Las Vegas

Enoteca San Marco – “Molto” Mario Batali Shines at The Venetian

Enjoy a glass of the signature Sauvignon "B" while perusing the menu at Enoteca San Marco at The Venetian Las Vegas.

Any trip to Las Vegas wouldn’t be complete without me making a sojourn to one of the many celebrity chef outposts on The Strip.  On our last visit, I left P.B. at the Bally’s Sports Book and took a trip to The Venetian where I had a completely enjoyable solo lunch at Mario Batali’s Enoteca San Marco facing St. Mark’s Square.

It was a relatively quiet Sunday afternoon so I had my choice of tables.  With newspaper in hand, I selected a table on the patio and settled in for a long leisurely lunch.  Soon after I was seated, a group of performers from the resort’s “Phantom of the Opera” production took to a small stage set up on the Square and proceeded to entertain diners and visitors to the Grand Canal Shoppes alike.

My server arrived promptly to give me a run-down on the Chef’s specials including the daily pizza, pasta and salad choices.  After looking through the selections on the menu, I chose one of the day’s pasta specials – cavatappi with pork belly ragu along with a side of the Brussels sprouts salad.  While a hearty red would have gone with the pasta dish, I chose a glass of the signature white Sauvignon “B” which was, in my opinion, a little more conducive to lunch.  The quality of the wine plus the hefty eight-ounce pour made the $15 price tag seem a lot more reasonable.

Casual seating at the marble bar is available for diners at Enoteca San Marco.

Casual seating at the marble bar is available for diners at Enoteca San Marco.

Shortly after pouring my wine, my waiter returned with a paper-wrapped serving of mahogany-crusted country bread along with a package of thin and crispy breadsticks.  These were excellent chewy complements to the Brussels sprout salad, a crunchy concoction of shredded raw sprouts, piquant Parmesan Reggiano cheese and a light slick of grassy olive oil.  (I’ve since made this and several of his dishes from his ” Italian Grill” cookbook and we’ve enjoyed them all.)

Impressed with my meal so far, I eagerly anticipated my pasta dish while flipping through the Sunday paper, sipping my wine and enjoying the entertainment.  My pasta arrived and, in a word, it was superb.  Redolent of caramelized onions and garlic, the rich meaty sauce featured a generous amount of meltingly tender shreds of pork.  The homemade pasta spirals a perfect vehicle for the luxurious sauce.  By far one of the most decadent pasta dishes I have ever had and I finished every bite.

Cavatappi with pork belly ragu.

Too satisfied to even think about dessert, I finished my wine while watching the crowd go by and, if my Las Vegas Review-Journal had been a copy of Le Monde and the blue above a true sky, I could have easily mistaken my afternoon meal for a luncheon in the real Venezia.

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  1. Roxy Says:

    Sounds ideal. I cannot wait to check it out.

  2. Save Money on Las Vegas Restaurants -- Big Dining Deals | Royallyflushed Says:

    […] ENOTECA San Marco (Located Inside the Venetian Hotel & Casino) (Read our review here.) […]

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