Today we were looking for a lighter, less expensive place to eat for lunch…less expensive for Vegas at least! Unfortunately, we did not have any reservations set up, and with the restrictions in place at the time, reservations were mandatory at everyplace other than fast food. So as I was getting some business taken care of, Michael went online to see if there were any nearby reservations available. There were actually a couple of immediate availability reservations, which is good information on a Saturday. We decided on La Pizza & La Pasta at Eataly in Park MGM since that is where we were at the moment anyway.
Eataly is a chain, so I went into lunch with fairly low expectations. We were seated in an “overflow” area, which was actually another Eataly restaurant that had not reopened yet. For lunch, Eataly offers both an A la Carte menu as well as a prix-fixe menu. In addition, when we were there, the lunch special was an “All-You-Can-Eat Pizza” special, with about 5 choices. However, I was not going to eat pizza so that was out since table participation is required for that. So a la carte it was for us.
As I was perusing the beverage menu, I noticed that my favorite beverage had two prices listed: $15/$60. When I asked the server, she said it was glass/pitcher. Pitcher? Of Aperol Spritz? Yes, please! But wait, Michael doesn’t drink Aperol Spritz…so would I finish the whole pitcher by myself? Challenge accepted.
For our lunch, I ordered the bucatini alla carbonara ($21):
Afeltra Bucatini di Gragnano IGP,
Salumeria Biellese Pancetta,
Chino Valley Eggs,
Pecorino Romano DOP Zerto
So basically, pasta, ham, eggs, cheese. Which is all that should EVER be in a Carbonara. You can tell me all about the fantastic carbonara you had with peas, or cream, or whatever. And while I am sure your dish was amazing, it was not a carbonara. I will accept substitutions in the pork product used…pancetta, bacon, etc. but any other deviations means it is now a delicious pasta cream sauce dish.
So now that we have gotten that part all worked out, here is my Carbonara from La Pizza & La Pasta.
Flavor wise, this was delicious. the sauce was delightful. My only issue? The cook on the pasta. Eataly informs you right on the menu that the pasta is cooked to al dente. So soggy, overcooked pasta is not what I expected and it is not what I got. Unfortunately, it was actually still raw and crunchy in the middle, so it had not even made it to al dente.
Michael ordered the Del Salumiere pizza ($24). Our waitress told us that since we ordered one pizza and one pasta, they would come out of different kitchens and might come out at different times. Well, they did come out a different times, but it wasn’t to bad, within minutes of each other. Michaels pizza is described as:
San Marzano Tomato Sauce, Mozzarella di Bufala, Ferrarini Spicy Salumi, Rovagnati Granbiscotto Prosciutto Cotto, Sweet Italian Sausage, Basil
Yes, I forgot to take a picture before he started eating, but you get the jist. The crust looked good, solid wood fire char. The toppings looked plentiful and the cheese was a typical amount for true Italian style pizza. I am not a fan of spicy or tomato, but my little bite was yummy.
In the end, It was a good lunch at a great price. The total bill before tip was $123.55 but keep in mind that $60 of that was my pitcher of Aperol. Speaking of that pitcher, did I get it all finished? Well almost. Michael did end up having one glass…over my strenuous objections but what can you do?