- VIVA LAS AREPAS
- 1616 Las Vegas Blvd S., 366-9696.
- Sunday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m.-midnight.
Viva Las Arepas owner and head chef Felix Arellano used to serve his arepas muy deliciosas from a stand in the Dino’s parking lot. Now that he’s moved up to air-conditioned luxury (and converted the old digs into a taco/hot dog joint), he’s also expanded his selection of Venezuelan specialties. Here’s our advice on what not to miss.
Garlic shrimp arepa
You can’t visit Viva Las Arepas and not get the namesake dish. The Venezuelan take on a taco swaddles fillings in a cornmeal bun. The robust garlic shrimp version is a standout. $6.
The highlight of Arellano’s expanded menu might be his wood-fired meats. His chicken is luscious, with crisp, smoky skin enveloping supple, moist meat that puts its rotisserie brethren to shame. $11.
Chicharrones y yucca frita
Pig-skin nuggets and fried yucca— the Venezuelan version of steak frites. Need I say more? $6.
Reina pepiada arepa
Another food-stand holdover, Arellano’s take on chicken salad is so much better than your mom’s or my mom’s (don’t tell her). $5.
Venezuelan cheese sticks? Yes, please. It’s easy to overlook this little house-made gem nestled at the bottom of the menu. Don’t. $2.