Bellagio altered the landscape of Las Vegas dining when it built celebrated chef restaurants overlooking its iconic fountains.
The tradition of delivering lakeside epicurean experiences continues with the debut of Lago by Chef Julian Serrano, a contemporary, Milan-inspired Italian restaurant concept.
“I remember when I was approached about opening my first Bellagio restaurant, Picasso, in front of some ‘wild fountain,’” Chef Serrano says. “It was unheard of at the time, but the potential was undeniable.”
Boasting a new outdoor patio with views of the fountains, Lago’s space is inspired by Italian Futurism—the artistic and cultural movement of early 20th century Italy.
The space is injected with color, from a bold 1,500-square-foot mosaic map of Milan at the entrance to the sleek marble mixology counter greeting guests. The dining room, designed by Munge Leung, features large arched windows maximizing views of the fountains.
At his third Las Vegas restaurant, Michelin-starred Chef Serrano built an extensive menu of small plates to encourage guests to experiment and explore.
“I want to stretch guests’ perception beyond their typical Italian experience," Chef Serrano says.
Crudo di Pesce marries raw seafood with the flavor of fruits and vegetables. Chef Serrano’s flair for vegetarian gastronomy progresses with indulgences like Risotto cooked with red wine and Burrata cheese.
Chef Serrano hasn’t limited Lago to small plates. The menu also contains a section aimed at the hearty eater with creations such as the Piedmontese beef tenderloin with Gorgonzola cheese.
All of the restaurant’s libations include a food component that complements the flavor of each cocktail. Bellagio master mixologist Ricardo Murcia designed Italian versions of classic cocktails sporting intricate garnishes, handmade by the resort’s beverage team.
Murcia’s prediction for a crowd favorite is the Rosso Bellini. This elegant cocktail boasts a caramel nest holding a golden raspberry hovering over a refreshing mixture of Hangar One Raspberry, Toschi Fragoli Wild Strawberry Liqueur, Prosecco, raspberry syrup, and fresh lemon juice.
The Sgroppino features an intricate frozen sphere of Prosecco, Lemoncello, lemon sorbet, and cocoa butter. This creation rests atop a scoop of lemon sorbet meant to be mixed in the surrounding Prosecco as soon as guests are finished savoring the sphere.
Wine connoisseurs will delight in the wine menu featuring 750 bottles from highly sought-after labels such as Sassicaia and Gaja as well as to hard-to-find small production Italian varietals like Nebbiolo and Sangiovese. The collection also offers a large collection from vineyards in California and Oregon.