Carmine’s Italian and Virgil’s Real Barbecue

Carmine’s Italian and Virgil’s Real Barbecue

Two Great Sister Restaurants

Carmine’s is a huge, cavernous, best of the best Italian restaurant located in the famous Forum Shops between Caesars Palace and the Mirage on the Las Vegas Strip. With a massive dining room, second floor deck, and a private event room on the second story, we dined there two nights ago. 

Beautiful tables holding about 100 of us, each with four wines to sample or any cocktail that we wished awaited us. Appetizer plates were filled with items to choose from such as salmon on toast, antipastos, cheeses, and salads. Next up were giant bowls of fried zucchini and their famous meatball on a type of biscuit. They are well known for enormous orders, and these did not disappoint! I sampled an espresso martini and then had a wonderful Spiedini Alla Romana. The pasta dished included rigatoni alla vodka, and spaghetti and meatballs, followed by eggplant parmigiana, chicken contadina and huge salads of salmon orenata. Dessert was the classic tiramisu and cannoli. 

You have over 100 shops to browse among after dinner, if you have the strength to walk. I love Carmine’s and you will too. Take out service availability of course, with numerous private rooms, this magnificent restaurant is a divine place to dine. With a happy hour, take out, and a vegetarian menu, you will have a great time looking over the hundreds of photos on the wall. They have huge family style portions of all your favorite dishes including clams, mussels, and pastas.


Hot and cold antipasto salads, peppers and onions, lasagna, meatballs, ravioli with cheese, rigatoni and broccoli; all the items are fresh, hot and wonderfully seasoned. Plenty of chicken, seafood, and beef dishes to pick from. Rack of Lamb and Veal chops are their specialty. If you wish to book a group, call Kay Kolbo, at 702-473-9700. They are open from 11-11. And don’t forget Carmine’s in New York City, D.C., and Atlantic City.

VIRGIL’S, Carmine’s sister restaurant, straight from New York City has been at The Linq for 5 years. Three stories high, this world-famous barbecue place is a must for southern BBQ lovers. I went there last night for another event. Virgil’s combines all the major smoke house favorites from across the country. Want southern Atlanta cooking? They have it. How about Kentucky? They have it. Want Texas, Alabama, Oklahoma’s or Louisiana, just ask the waiter and it will be on the menu.


Featuring homemade buttermilk biscuits and cornbread as starters, they offer Mississippi catfish; a combination of pulled pork, chicken and brisket smothered with jalapeños; hush-puppies, soups, and burgers made any way you want. There is a Virgil’s BBQ salad with pulled pork, the famous trainwreck fries covered with yes, basically a train wreck of side items, and trash riblets.

There are two giant smokers that go 24 hours, pumping out the massive amounts of meats. If you have a few in your party you can order the pig out platter, which consists of a little of most all the meats that they feature. Mashed potatoes, homemade mac and cheese, and hickory smoked baked beans are some of the others sides—two of them come with every order. The dessert menu is just as extensive.

The top floor has a private dining room, and a great view of The Linq. Doors open at 10 a.m. daily and of course they take walk-ins. Prepare for plenty of sauce on every order. 702-389-7400—Real BBQ and Live Music. Kay Kolbo also handles this restaurant for group bookings.