What’s for dinner tonight? This question is full of possibilities at The Venetian Resort, which features more than 60 food and beverage options that range from noteworthy steakhouses to upscale Asian, with nearly every choice in between.
Far more than a collection of restaurants, The Venetian Resort is more of a dynamic collective of world-class chefs including such well-known names as Thomas Keller, Buddy Valastro, Emeril Lagasse, and David Chang, the Netflix-famous phenom who is the newest addition to the resort.
Indeed, when The Venetian Resort opened in 1999, it signaled a new era for Las Vegas dining, offering a choice of chef-led restaurants instead of a massive Las Vegas-style buffet. Since its opening, The Venetian Resort has continued to recruit new chefs to reflect the changing tastes of Las Vegas travelers.
The past three years have only added to the culinary legacy of the resort with renovations to Wolfgang Puck’s steakhouse, the Strip’s first Latin restaurant from Lorena Garcia, the opening of a celebrated Sichuan and Cantonese luminary from Hong Kong, and two Italian standouts from the flourishing Los Angeles arts district.
To help you decide where to eat while you’re at The Venetian Resort, we asked the chefs at some of the resort’s best-known eateries to name their favorite dishes. Here’s what they say to order when you’re at The Venetian Resort, whether staying overnight or just popping in for a meal. We guarantee you won’t leave hungry.
Wolfgang Puck, at CUT
From the chef: Wolfgang Puck’s CUT completed a renovation in 2018, creating a modern and elegant space that feels very much like a club where everyone is welcome.
“When people walk into CUT, it’s all about hospitality,” Puck says. “You can have the most beautiful restaurant, but we have people like Gianni Toffanello, our manager here, who is amazing and treats everybody like a superstar, and executive chef Matt Hurley, who does amazing things in the kitchen.”
After 12 years at The Venetian Resort, Puck says it was time to revamp the space and expand the bar area. “About two years ago we started to talk about remodeling the restaurant, freshening it up, and then we got a little more space and expanded our bar,” Puck says. “We have this beautiful seafood bar, so when people walk by, they can look at our seafood display.”
What to order: That eye-catching raw bar sits next to the lounge, where diners can order from the menu or try some of the smaller dishes on the Rough Cuts menu, made just for the bar. There’s the Maine lobster roll, East and West Coast oyster platter, and a variety of caviars (should you feel fancy). But according to Puck, the steak is obviously a highlight of the menu. “We dry age some of our beef for up to 60 days,” Puck says. “We have meat from Snake River Farm in Idaho. We get steaks from Kansas and from Texas. Now we also have great Japanese beef. If you want the best Wagyu steak you get it right here at CUT.”
Seafood also gets the Puck treatment, with dishes ranging from red snapper ceviche to striped bass. “We have great lobsters, steamed or grilled with maybe a Béarnaise sauce or just a simple olive oil lemon vinaigrette,” he says.
Lorena Garcia, at Chica
From the chef: Venezuelan-born Garcia became the first Latina chef to open a restaurant on the Las Vegas Strip when Chica debuted at The Venetian Resort in 2017. Fresh from her appearances on TV’s Top Chef Masters, this Miami superstar was eager to introduce a new category of dining to the Strip.
Her dishes, everything from brunch to dinner entrees, are inspired by her travels through Latin America. She spent time living in Peru and Argentina and later landed in Miami, what she calls “the gateway to Latin America in the United States.”
“Chica is a celebration of all things Latin, with flavor profiles from Argentina, Venezuela, Peru, Brazil, Mexico, and many more,” she says. “I always say that the way that we Latinos identify is through our food and through our language, which is Spanish. So that’s exactly what you’re going to expect.”
For the decor at Chica, designers gave the space a roominess inspired by old casonas in Argentina and Venezuela with their balconies. The use of different colors and textures, such as leather and wood, are details she says can be found all through Latin America. “We wanted to bring a little corner of Latin America so as soon as you walk in, with the music, the décor, and with the food, you feel at home,” Garcia says.
What to order: Garcia recommends starting with a basket of fresh arepas for the table. Her upscale take on this staple of South American cuisine is served warm in three different varieties. But the ceviche, made at the bar in the center of the space, truly tops the pre-dinner experience. This fresh seafood cooked with bold citrus and aromatic herbs, is the perfect start to an amazing meal. “The way that we see it, everything that comes from the sea should be cold, right? With ice,” Garcia says. “We wanted to separate it from the hot kitchen, so you can also engage with our chef, who is there crafting the ceviche just for you. We have six seasonal choices that represent different regions in Latin America from Peru to the northern part of South America to Mexico. We even have a vegan option! I recommend sampling all six at your table.”
Alan Ji, at Mott 32
From the chef: The Venetian Resort brought one of the most highly acclaimed Chinese restaurants in the world to the United States when Mott 32 opened in late 2018. Inside this gorgeous, award-winning space, executive chef Alan Ji serves a menu of traditional Cantonese and Sichuan cuisines. “The design at Mott 32 is unique in that the designer Joyce Wang took classic Chinese elements, paired it with New York industrialism and added pieces of Las Vegas, like a neon sign and a boa chandelier,” Ji says.
The restaurant, which originally opened in Hong Kong in 2014, takes its name from the address of the first Chinese grocery store to open in New York City. Those Hong Kong dishes inspired the menu in Las Vegas, where Chinese recipes handed down for generations make up the menu.
What to order: The applewood roasted Peking duck, a must-order, typically sells out very fast, Ji says, but another standout on the menu? The signature hot and sour Iberico pork Shanghainese soup dumplings, served only in Vegas. “A lot of people have hot and sour soup and they like it, but this is a traditional soup dumpling mixed with hot and sour soup inside a soup dumpling,” Ji says.
Other only-in-Vegas experiences include a fine-tuned General Tso’s chicken (“No one in China knows this dish,” Ji says.), crispy Sichuan chicken, and crispy baby octopus with salt and pepper. Ji’s must-try dishes, he says, are the Iberico pork glazed with yellow mountain honey and Japanese Kobe beef A5+ served with grilled leeks, homemade black bean paste, and garlic chips. The restaurant also serves dim sum for happy hour, a rarity among Chinese restaurants. Order a round of the soup dumplings and some Bamboo Charcoal Pork Buns, and of course, a cocktail off the “Drink Sum” menu — the Hong Kong Ice Tea is a delectable mix of anejo tequila, Lillet Blanc, blackcurrant, and jasmine tea.
Angelo Auriana, sixth+mill ristorante, pizzeria & bar and Matteo’s Ristorante Italiano
From the chef: These new additions from chef Angelo Auriana and restaurateur Matteo Ferdinandi span the entire country of Italy. Inspired by the cuisine of Southern Italy, sixth+mill overlooks St. Marks Square in Grand Canal Shoppes, while Matteo’s Ristorante Italiano brings to life the cuisine of Northern Italy to The Venetian Restaurant Row. Both venues were based on favorites in the Los Angeles arts district, including the original sixth+mill and The Factory Kitchen, the Factory Street restaurant that inspired Matteo’s.
Auriana credits his father’s heritage for the menu at sixth+mill – especially its focus on the tomato. “As a child, I have vivid memories of his home-cooked red sauce for Sunday supper,” he says. “The pizza or baked pasta al forno was so flavorful and comforting from the wonderful richness of the tomatoes.”
He uses what he calls a “simplistic process” to create the Neapolitan-style pizzas at sixth+mill, which are cooked in artisan pizza ovens hand-made in Italy. “The real task is developing unique flavor with these basic ingredients,” Auriana says. “I think that the magic happens after mixing these basic ingredients, there is a fermentation and a slow maturation, which creates complexity and layers of flavor.”
And then there’s Matteo’s, where pasta is the true showcase of the menu — literally. Auriana put the fresh pasta station on full display, where you can watch the dough being made and shaped for each dish, like in the spaghettoni cacio e pepe and gnocchi alla Sorrentina.
What to order: Naturally, the Margherita pizza comes recommended at sixth+mill. “I believe that the secret of a delicious pizza is the balance between the ingredients creating a perfect harmony between the flavorful crust, the tomato, and the imported fior di latte cheese,” he says. “In other words, the least amount of ingredients creates true flavors, which make for the best recipes.”
Auriana also recommends linguine alle vongole at, prepared in a mild spice with fresh tomatoes, fried Brussels sprouts, and, for dessert, lemon ricotta della nonna, a lemon cake that is seemingly lighter than air.
Over at Matteo’s, you can’t not order a handmade pasta for dinner, but the menu is full of other delights not to be missed. Try the stracciatella di burrata cheese and focaccina calda al formaggio di recco, a traditional Ligurian recipe with layers of paper-thin unleavened dough filled with crescenza cheese and baked to a rich golden brown. Order it tradizionale or served with different toppings. Save room for Matteo’s cannoli, and prepare to rave about its crispy shell and heavenly ricotta filling.
There’s a whole world of fine dining to explore at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas — it’s all about knowing where to look (and eat) first.