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Dining

Dining News & Notes: No more Pinot, Giada opens, Downtown dogs and more

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Celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis waves from the red carpet as she arrives during the VIP grand opening of Giada, the first Giada De Laurentiis restaurant, on Monday, June 2, 2014, in the Cromwell.
Photo: Steve Marcus

The Venetian's Pinot Brasserie has shuttered. Operated by LA-based chef Joachim Splichal as part of the bi-coastal company Patina Restaurant Group, Pinot Brasserie was long one of the top French restaurants on the Strip, opening with the Venetian in 1999. Its closing is not much of a surprise; Daniel Boulud just opened DB Brasserie right next door. Venetian officials said there will be plans in this prime location in the resort's restaurant row.

Joachim Splichal cooks at Pinot Brasserie during Vegas Uncork'd in 2010.

Giada has arrived. The very first restaurant from TV personality Giada De Laurentiis has opened inside the Cromwell, the new boutique resort on the Strip at Flamingo Road. Plans call for eventual lunch and brunch service, but for now Giada is open for dinner Sunday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 5 to 11 p.m. The contemporary Italian menu includes soups, salads, pastas, steaks and seafood, as well as an antipasto and pizzetta bar portion of the menu with plenty of shareable small plates such as grilled broccoli rabe with Calabrian chili vinaigrette, orzo meatballs with parmesan pomodoro, citrus marinated calamari salad, cheeses, salamis and crostinis.

Coming soon to Container Park: Cheffini's. The specialty hot dog cart that's been patrolling Fremont East in recent years will be taking over the micro-restaurant space formerly occupied by Pork & Beans this month. The menu will expand on the cart's offerings, adding a chorizo dog as well as vegan and turkey dogs. The operators will also take over the adjacent coffee window with the Black Cup, replacing Beatnik.

Downtown's new O Face Doughnuts in the revamped John E. Carson building is celebrating National Doughnut Day on June 6 by giving away a free glazed doughnut to anyone who buys a cold brew coffee.

Morels French Steakhouse & Bistro at Palazzo is offering special lunch and dinner summer tasting menus through August 31. The $22 two-course lunch includes appetizers like onion soup gratinee or romaine heart salad and entrees of steak frites or a turkey club. The $56 four-course dinner menu includes dishes such as a 20-ounce bone-in sirloin with Provence-style ratatouille and classic profiteroles with candied almond ice cream. Locals dining at Morels can also enjoy 50 percent off bottles of wine from the restaurant's award-winning list by showing Nevada ID.

O Face Doughnuts is celebrating National Doughnut Day this Friday.

Andrea's at Encore has expanded its Thursday night Cheers & Chopsticks happy hour menu, now available every night from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the restaurant's lounge or the adjacent VDKA bar. Table share dishes include salmon tartare, five spice squid, miso black cod bites (all $10), spicy wok-fried chicken ($15) and Wagyu sliders ($17). Classic sushi rolls and specialty cocktails also are available.

Not to be confused with the Cromwell's Giada, Giada's Italian Cucina in Henderson is hosting the Hellkat Car Show and a $12 all-you-can-eat Italian buffet starting at 5 p.m. on June 14.

Honey Salt is launching a new program called Summer of Love. Beginning on June 16, the restaurant will partner with a different local charity each week this summer on a special three-course tasting menu highlighting seasonal and local ingredients, with $5 from each tasting menu purchased donated to that week's cause. Enjoying a Summer of Love sangria at the bar will mean another $1 for that week's charity. The lineup of participating organizations includes the Torino Foundation, United Way of Southern Nevada, Three Square, Desert Reign, Opportunity Village, Green Our Planet, Keep Memory Alice, Agassi Foundation, Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth, Create a Change Now and Girls on the Run.

Save the date of September 27 for the Epicurean Charitable Foundation's 13th annual MENUS gala, an event which includes a poolside dine-around at MGM Grand and a performance by Kings of Leon at the Grand Garden Arena. More than 30 local restaurants and vendors will supply food and drinks for the fundraising event, with tickets starting at $600.

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Brock Radke is Las Vegas Weekly's food editor and author of the Strip-focused column The Incidental Tourist. He has written ...

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