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Celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck is known for his many restaurants (over 20 globally plus more than 80 locations of Wolfgang Puck Express) and decades in the business. His most famous is Spago in Beverly Hills (now with outposts in Las Vegas, Maui, Singapore, and Budapest). Lupo is his first Italian restaurant and it is housed in the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
Lupo offers a menu of Italian classics, pizza, and steaks surrounding a large center bar and glass-enclosed wine room.
Anthony’s Take: This restaurant is a bit dark and moody inside (like most in Las Vegas), but has many tables outside of the main dining room in a hall along Mandalay Bay’s restaurant row. The outer tables are okay, but you don’t get the sense of place and feel like you’re eating in a shopping mall. I made a reservation on OpenTable and am glad I did because the hosts were turning away those that arrived without bookings. Service was attentive and friendly. Dishes and drinks arrived quickly with the service team coming to the table many times to check on us. The food was standard Italian fare. Nothing stood out as great or anything that you couldn’t get anywhere else. The portions were tiny. I was exhausted from traveling from Zurich to Chicago to Denver to Las Vegas and chose Lupo since it was not a far walk from my room in the Delano.
Decor & Vibe
As mentioned above, the dining room offers the aesthetic of what most restaurants in Las Vegas try to achieve. We were seated outside of the main dining room in the walkway along Mandalay Bay’s restaurant row. This area feels more like you’re dining in the hallway of a shopping mall with no ambiance whatsoever.
We were seated promptly upon arriving at the restaurant. The menu consists of Antipasti, Pizze (that’s the plural of Pizza in Italian and not a typo), Pasta (which should be Paste if we’re making the Italian correct, but surely confusing for those that don’t speak the language), some entrees (Secondi), steaks and chops (found in the Alla Griglia section), and Contorni for sides. We chose to start with the Grand Platter of Italian Meats & Cheeses and then we split the Paccheri Bolognese and Chicken Parmigiana.
The Grand Platter of Italian Meats & Cheeses was anything but grand. It was tiny and pretty unimpressive. I had platters in Sicily that were three to four times the size of this one for 25% of the price. Everything was high quality but the quantity was severely lacking.
Next, we were brought the Paccheri Bolognese with braised beef, pork, and veal. It was tasty, but something you could get in just about any Italian restaurant. The picture represents a half portion but even if both were combined, it’s not a big dish.
Finally, we had the Chicken Parmigiana. It’s a breaded chicken breast, sauce, and cheese. Just what is expected from chicken parm, but again not worth getting excited over.
I had a few glasses of a sparkling rose and my colleague had a few beers. Both were fine and in line with pricing for Las Vegas.
I feel like the menu here was just phoned in from Chef Puck. Try to get a table inside the restaurant or you’ll feel like you’re dining in a shopping mall. No dish stood out as excellent and this restaurant is an option if you’re either exhausted like I was or can’t get a reservation elsewhere.
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