Matteo Ferdinandi and chef Angelo Auriana, the team behind Eater 38 member Matteo’s Italian Ristorante at the Venetian, opened Brera Osteria, taking over their Sixth + Mill space at the Grand Canal Shoppes.
The restaurant on the resort’s replica of St. Mark’s Square takes its name from the Brera neighborhood in Milan, Italy, the inspiration for the eatery. Ferdinandi says the artsy-cool sidewalk cafes found in the neighborhood inform the menu, which explores the regions and flavors of Italy, where both Auriana and Ferdinandi grew up. “Chef Angelo is inspired by countryside recipes, and personal culinary identity emphasizes the importance of the highest quality fresh ingredients and the use of cooking techniques that are meant to highlight their true flavors, with food presented in a minimalistic way,” Ferdinandi says.
The restaurant’s location near the convention center made it seem like a destination for post-meeting cocktails and appetizers. The duo decided to swap out Sixth + Mill with Brera after seeing success with the restaurant in Los Angeles, where Brera Ristorante opened in the Los Angeles arts district in 2016. “We knew this concept was destined for Las Vegas, where diners are looking for unique experiences,” he says.
The restaurant serves dishes such as a braised pork shank, cacio e pepe, and lamb chops. Ferdinandi recommends ordering steak tartare, a pizza to share, the risotto alla Milanese, and one of the Brian Flannery steaks. “However, the whole menu is a work of art,” he says.
Ferdinandi says that Milan is the birthplace of the happy hour — known there as the aperitivo hour — and felt the indoor patio reminded him of the experience in the Brera neighborhood in Milan. “Once conventions return to Las Vegas, we think Brera will become a destination for the post-meeting crowd looking for a great experience from the afternoon into the evening,” he says. “At Brea, this was an opportunity to team with chef Angelo to create a concept that feels more like Italy than Las Vegas. This is about our Sunday meals as children, shared plates, and an extensive selection of seafood including branzino, calamari, prime sirloin top steak, warm bread, homemade pastas, and the freshest ingredients complemented by Italian wines and cocktails.”
Brera Osteria, Grand Canal Shoppes, 3377 Las Vegas Boulevard S., 702-414-1227. Open from 5 to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from noon to 9:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Happy hour every Friday through Sunday from 3 to 5 p.mm. with 50 percent off beverages and pizzas.