Las Vegas may seem like a city designed for dinner, with the day's last meal setting the stage for a vibrant night out on the town. But who wants to wait all day before eating something great? Many Las Vegas restaurants are open for lunch, and diners can often take advantage of smaller crowds and lower prices, while also enjoying an exquisite lunch.
GIADA, the only restaurant of celebrity chef Giana De Laurentiis, is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, giving diners the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful restaurant at any time of day. Lunch becomes a special occasion at a restaurant like this. Some of the best Las Vegas restaurants make lunch feel like an escape from the busy, glitzy Strip. Diners looking for some peace and quiet along with their lunch will find several soothing options.
If you're craving sustenance more than peacefulness, Hash House a Go Go will fix you up with generous portions of comfort food. Diners looking for a lunch that will sustain them throughout a day of sight-seeing and gambling will find plenty of options on the menu. Local lunch spots are also good choices for larger portions, often featuring comfortable patios and serving innovative, creative dishes that are every bit as good as any dinner entrée.
Public School 702
If only school had been as much fun as the Public School restaurants, everyone would have been an "A" student. The theme here will keep your table talking about the vintage globes, school trophies, encyclopedias and other school memorabilia from an earlier time. The lunch menu includes burgers in varieties like bison and lamb, and a host of dishes that make it difficult to choose what to have, like Shrimp and Grafton Cheddar Grits, Bangers and Mash and Beer Battered Fish & Chips. For starters and to share, try the Bacon Cheddar Tots with Sriracha ketchup or the Chorizo Mac & Cheese. Another improvement over actual school: a full bar with a wide selection of beer, wine and cocktails. ((702) 749-3007)
Serving not one but two kinds of delicious pizza, Due Forni is the only gourmet pizza restaurant in the United States utilizing a new model of dual custom-designed Napolitano brick ovens to cook up authentic Neapolitan and Roman pies. Gourmet selections include pizzas like the flavorful Brasato, topped with braised short rib, parmigiano crema, calabrian peppers, and chimichurri. Aside from the original and flavorful pizza, the lunch specials offer tempting alternatives, like the delicious Baked Penne with basil and Bufala ricotta, served in just the right-sized portion to satisfy but not leave you too stuffed for dessert. For a light and sweet end to the meal, try the creamy Sweet Bufala Ricotta with imported Bufala ricotta, organic honey and toasted pistachios. (702-586-6500)
Offering a dining experience unlike any other, Todd English's Olives lets guests eat outside on its picturesque patio above Lake Bellagio, providing a view of the Fountains of Bellagio few ever get to see. Guests can take in the iconic Vegas attraction as they devour a menu of Mediterranean specialties, including tasty starter dishes like the Grilled Squid & Octopus and Tuna Carpaccio. Other lunchtime selections include a variety of flatbreads, house-made pastas and entrées ranging from the Pan Seared Atlantic Salmon to the Olives Burger. Whatever you decide on, be sure to try the popular Beef Carpaccio with Gorgonzola polenta, Parmesan, cipollini onions, balsamic reduction, scallion cream and garlic aioli--it's one of the restaurant's signature lunch dishes. (702-693-8865, 866-259-7111)
Hash House A Go Go
When you're hungry--and we mean really, really hungry--there's only one place in town to go: Hash House A Go Go. Serving up "twisted farm food" for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the restaurant is famous for its enormous portions, like its one-pound stuffed burgers: two patties with stuffing in between on a fresh bun with lettuce, tomato and red onion. Other lunchtime favorites include the BBBLT farm-fresh sandwich--bacon, bacon and more bacon, with lettuce and tomato--and the Sage Fried Chicken stacked with Hash House A Go Go's famous bacon waffle, hot maple caramel reduction and crowned with fried leeks. The dishes aren't just large, they're so good you'll be tempted to eat the whole thing. (702-804-4646)
Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger give Mexican food a few new twists at Border Grill. You'll certainly find standards like tacos, quesadillas and enchiladas, but you can also try the Chile Relleno Burger for lunch--ground Black Angus Brisket and short rib, rounded out with toppings like a Portobello mushroom and a stuffed poblano, on a Brioche bun. The Steak Nachos or Grilled Skirt Steak are hearty options if you're extra hungry. The Margaritas come in a tremendous variety of flavors, including pineapple vanilla and elderflower. There's an definite emphasis on sustainability here with organic black beans and humane certified, antibiotic and hormone free meats and poultry. The vibrantly decorated restaurant overlooks Mandalay Bay's pool area, and its colorful ambiance lends itself to casual meals. (702-632-7403)
Located on the third floor of Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas, this contemporary Asian bistro offers a relaxed ambiance where guests can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner complemented by beautiful d�cor (including floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking CityCenter) and impeccable service. Its enticing menu caters to all kinds of tastes and diets, including gluten-free diners. Separate gluten-free menus are available for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and include such delectable dishes as Belgium Waffles topped with caramel-pecan cream and French Toast for breakfast, Lentil Curry and Lasagna for lunch and Pad Thai and XO Fried Rice for dinner. Vegan menus are available as well. (888-881-9367)
The small, charming Carson Kitchen in Downtown Las Vegas was among the first restaurants to take root in the on-going efforts to transform the downtown area in a chic, trendy place to hang out. Carson Kitchen's quiet ambiance is wonderful for lunch when you'd like to have a conversation and a glass of great wine. The late chef Kerry Simon opened Carson Kitchen, and after its opening, the restaurant's innovative dishes quickly gained positive attention. "Social Plates" include "Devil's" Eggs, topped with crispy pancetta and caviar, and Veal Meatballs with sherry foie gras cream. The flatbreads are ideal for lunchtime sharing and go well as a side to a few shared plates. The drink menu includes a wide selection of wines and beers, along with a selection of finely crafted cocktails. (702-473-9523)
With its striking Strip views and daily lunch specials, it's no wonder sushi fanatics love Sushi Roku. Guests can enjoy one of several lunch specials without breaking the bank, like the popular Sushi Six Assortment--six pieces of nigiri sushi for $23. Diners can also build their own Custom Bento Box, choosing from chicken, beef or salmon teriyaki and pairing their selection with assorted tempura, sashimi or a California roll. Pan Fried Chicken Yakisoba and Hakata Ramen are also available. Having attracted everyone from Usher to Kris Jenner to its tables, one bite and it's easy to see why Sushi Roku is a star in its own right. (702-733-7373)
A favorite among the city's many performers, Verandah is one of Las Vegas' hidden gems. Guests have the option of dining on an expansive garden terrace that overlooks the resort's lushly landscaped private pool during warmer months (generally March-December), providing an oasis of calm among the frenzy found on the Las Vegas Strip. Even if you don't dine outside, Verandah's mouth-watering Italian menu is enough to create an unforgettable dining experience. Lunchtime selections vary from entrées like the Chicken and Bacon Mac-n-Cheese and the Penne Al Forno, a Bolognese ragu with mushrooms and mozzarella, to a selection of Paninis and wood-fired pizzas. Regardless of what you choose, none of the dishes disappoint. (702-632-5121)
Celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis' first restaurant was highly anticipated, and it delivers a menu that doesn't disappoint. GIADA's menu reflects the chef's Californian influences on Italian dishes, making it truly a one-of-a-kind restaurant. Utilizing the freshest ingredients to create new takes on traditional Italian cuisine while staying true to classic favorites, lunch dishes include pizza with Mortadella, salads, and sandwiches like Muffuletta, a Lemon Pesto Grilled Cheese and a Lobster Roll. Naturally, you'll find pasta also: Sweet Pea Tortellini and Sardinian Gnocchi al Pomodoro. The restaurant also boasts the Strip's first antipasto bar and a stunning view of the Fountains of Bellagio. (855-442-3271)
About Terrisa Meeks
Terrisa Meeks is a native born, life-long resident of Las Vegas. She became a traveler long before she could walk. Terrisa has traveled throughout the United States, from Maine to Hawaii, but she especially enjoys exploring the Southwestern United States.
Las Vegas is a place she's watched grow and change. While she always enjoys visiting the Strip, Terrisa's true passion is for exploring the lightly-visited Mojave Desert. She gets giddy over hard-to-find back roads, quirky museums, and ghost towns. Her happiest travel moments involve vast expanses of wilderness and a good map.
Read more about Terrisa Meeks here.
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