Being a Vegas native, I was very curious and found myself wondering how this amazing looking establishment landed in a place where there used to just be desert that I have been driving by for years. My first impression was that someone must have really taken their time creating this, and that’s evident as soon as your eyes meet with it. Primo vibes!
I recently met with some of the Real Vegas magazine fam at the bar and enjoyed having a delicious smoked cocktail with a big chunk of ice and caught up as we were waiting 1 more to join us. Once our entire party had arrived, we were sat at our table and greeted by the staff. During the entire visit, our group experienced next-level service from the incredible staff at Basilico.
I absolutely loved that the chef made the selections of what dishes to send out to our table. Being our first time in, and as a chef, you know when that happens, it’s more of an honor. Between the cured meats and the burrata in the first offering, being half Sicilian myself, Chef Francesco Di Caudo was really hitting home with those flavors but with a special added layer of chef’s unique journey and talents within each dish presented to us. After tasking the first 2 items chef sent out, I was already sold and everything that followed and was sent our way the remainder of the evening, was consistently in sync with chef’s choices within the courses. Chef Francesco Di Caudo’s cooking is indicative of authentic Sicilian cooking and it’s no surprise to learn that chef is 100% Sicilian. His modern interpretation of old-world Italian cuisine allows him to honor his past couple with today’s global influences.
With every dish mentioned, they were loved by us all. But the one I’m coming back for first, is absolutely going to be the “CAVATELLI NORCINA”, with fennel seed, sausage ragu, and a decadent and silky sottocenere cheese. All I can just say is just absolute comfort; this dish hit home, literally melts in your mouth; on a cold day, rainy day, sunny day – It’s an any day kind of dish!
This will be one of my weaknesses when I’m driving home on certain eves, as I will be stopping by the bar for a smoked beverage and a bowl of this cavatelli. And please just give me a spoon!
Social hour at Basilico is daily from 4-6pm with a custom curated list of eclectic and delicious cocktails at their bar or in the lounge and includes a variety of food specials every day. Al-fresco dining is excellent at Basilico (weather permitting). Chef’s Special Tasting Menus run about $85-$150 per person. Basilico is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Dinner is open and served nightly starting at 5pm. You won’t be disappointed to come in during social hour and try a smoked cocktail like I had or some of the other cocktails our Real Vegas crew recommends, like the Fiore Di Fiamma, which consists of vodka, elderflower liqueur, blueberry honey, lavender syrup, lime, lemonade, and pineapple, or the Giardano which boasts gin, a house made basil cordial, mirto verde, and cucumber. Some of the delicious menu items we enjoyed were the Hamachi crudo with pomelo, golden caviar, and buttermilk. The burrata with roasted rainbow carrot salad and sorrel-pistachio pesto was delicious. The Kusshi oysters were fresh and adorned with persimmon, kumquat, and sea beans. And we can’t forget about the branzino with yams, porcino, spinach and fig sauce, complimented by the excellent risotto with mascarpone cheese, coffee, and chestnut honey flavors.
I appreciate the entire experience and highly recommend this new next level Vegas local and tourist establishment. Not too far from the strip, and right in the heart of the Southwest for us locals.
Basilico, Chef Francesco Di Caudo, and their amazing staff welcome you to come in and see what all the hype is about, and I will see you in the next edition of Real Vegas Magazine for the first ever “Real EATS” by Chef Vic.
(Photo credit: Louiie Victa)