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Five Reasons to Eat at Rao’s Las Vegas Italian Restaurant

Last updated: January 12, 2017 at 9:04 am. Posted by in Caesars Palace, Las Vegas Restaurants, Things to Do in Las Vegas. 2 Comments on Five Reasons to Eat at Rao’s Las Vegas Italian Restaurant.

Rao’s restaurant originally opened its doors in New York City in 1896. While it hasn’t been around in Las Vegas quite that long, it is celebrating 10 years of success at Caesars Palace this week.

The iconic New York restaurant is one of the oldest family-operated restaurants in the country that’s still in its original location. Frank Pellegrino, Jr., fourth generation co-owner of the original Rao’s, Rao’s Las Vegas Italian restaurant at Caesars Palace and Rao’s in Hollywood, grew up helping his father and family at the restaurant in New York.

His family’s legendary Southern Italian restaurant is marking its 10-year milestone at Caesars Palace with a special anniversary dinner Jan. 12 at 6:30 p.m. Guests will enjoy a cocktail reception and a meal based on Pellegrino’s new “Rao’s Classics” cookbook. The dinner is priced at $150 per person.

The anniversary dinner is a great reason to visit Rao’s, but we never need an excuse. We like to grab meals there on a regular basis. Here are five reasons we love to eat at this classic dining spot.

Uncle Vincent’s Lemon Chicken

Uncle Vincent's Lemon Chicken at Rao's Las Vegas Restaurant

Uncle Vincent’s Lemon Chicken

This simple yet flavorful dish is one of the signatures on the menu at Rao’s and it’s a must-try. The tender bone-in chicken is charcoal-broiled, perfectly seasoned and topped with Uncle Vincent’s famous lemon sauce. The sauce is light and savory and is made using olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, red wine vinegar and oregano.


Famous Rao's meatballs - Best Italian restaurant in Las Vegas

Meatballs at Rao’s Las Vegas.

Every good Italian restaurant has to serve a good meatball and Rao’s doesn’t disappoint. Their famous meatballs are always a big hit with customers. They’re made with ground veal, ground pork and ground beef, Italian breadcrumbs, garlic and Pecorino Romano cheese. The meatballs are, of course, served in a delicious marinara sauce made with imported Italian crushed tomatoes.

New York replica room

Rao's Las Vegas at Caesars Palace has plenty of tables available

Rao’s Las Vegas at Caesars Palace

The original Rao’s in New York City is extremely difficult to get into. It only has 12 tables, which are highly coveted and usually reserved for VIPs. The Las Vegas outpost of the restaurant at Caesars Palace has a replica of the iconic 12-table room, but the good news is that the Las Vegas restaurant has plenty of other space including a center bar, private dining room, patio and more.

Outdoor patio

Las Vegas restaurant Rao's features a outdoor patio

Rao’s patio

Nothing beats having a great meal outside and in Las Vegas that’s possible during most of the year. We love the outdoor patio at Rao’s with its poolside views.


You have to order Rao's cheesecake for dessert

Rao’s cheesecake

We never say no to dessert and the desserts at Rao’s are all so heavenly we couldn’t pick just one mention here. Traditional cannolis or tiramisu are always a good bet. The classic New York-style cheesecake is also a winner. Other options include gelato, profiteroles, German chocolate cake, seasonal shortcake and more. You really can’t go wrong.

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About The Author

Kristine came to Las Vegas more than 20 years ago to escape the frigid weather of Minnesota. Now she soaks up the sun while covering all things Vegas from dining to nightlife to hotels. She has written for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and When she’s not scouring the Strip for stories you can usually find her at a concert, enjoying a nice glass of wine or binge-watching Netflix and HBO.

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2 Responses

  1. armand iorio

    I visit vegas a couple of times a year and stay for a few weeks. In the last 10 years i have been to rao’s
    probably over 40 times. Rao’s is more than just great Italian food . It’s about a warm welcoming atmosphere that make you feel like your in a friends home. Whenever Friends from NY meet me in Vegas I take them to Rao’s . Besides the Lemon Chicken and great meatballs I always recommend the INCEDIBLE seafood salad and Linquine with white clam sauce.
    WE have yet to be dissappointed. I’ll be there next month and can’t wait.

  2. Kerry kurtus

    I was happy to dine at Raos in NYC some years ago. Yes, I’m sure getting a table today would be an over reach. I was with the owner of the largest importing and exporting meat company and he was always welcome anywhere and everywhere.
    I live on the East coast and the West coast so I’ll certainly try Raos in Vegas. I would be there in NY if I knew the secret to get seating????