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Oct 11, 2019

Spaghetti, rotini, ravioli, fusilli, penne, lasagna and more, there is no shortage of pasta types, and in Las Vegas, we have just as many Italian eateries. How do you choose? No worries #EatLocal is here to give you the 411 on where locals are getting their pasta fix.

Located in the 18B Arts District, Esther’s Kitchen has quickly made its way onto everyone’s best lists since opening in January 2018.

Esther’s chef-owner James Trees serves up seasonal Italian soul food from an open kitchen. Scratch-made pastas, pizzas and unique salads are on the menu and served in a warm dining room flanked by an impressive bar that runs the length of the restaurant.

Toward the back of the restaurant is a small room behind a large window where Trees’ team is hand making the pasta Vegas wants. Trees is a local himself, born and raised in Las Vegas, starting his career with an internship at the Mirage at age 15.

You cannot go wrong with any of the pastas at Esther’s, from the rigatoni with crispy sausage, smoked tomato and pino’s rabe to the egg tagliatelle with wild boar Bolognese, tomato and foie, you are in for a treat. One thing to remember is Esther’s has some pastas you can only get at lunch and others you can grab at dinner. It’s all-good though; just make sure to try it for both meals.

Of course, #EatLocal has a few favorites to point you in the right direction when it comes to the pasta possibilities at Esther’s.

Radiatorre with Black Garlic, Lemon Cream and Toasted Breadcrumbs – This simply yet mind-blowing dish is only available for lunch, but man is it worth the trip downtown. Grab your office mates and make a lunch date. Dundler Mifflin will still be there when you get back.

A kick of garlic with the light lemon cream on perfectly cooked pasta that look like little radiators. What’s not to love?

Bucatini Carbonara with Guancale, Peas, Egg Yolk and Grana Padana – Hold a second while I do the Homer Simpson moan of joy. Carbonara done right. Like all of the pastas here, this could have come out of your Italian Nona’s kitchen. Warm and rich with crispy bites of pork and fresh pops of pea flavor. The lunch version with rigatoni is equally delicious.

Spaghetti with Sungold Tomatoes, Pomodoro, Parmesan, Basil and Poppette – Ok, fancy names aside, this may be the best spaghetti and meatballs you will eat in Las Vegas. You know when you enjoy some nice store bought ice cream and then you go to a creamery where they make everything by hand with fresh ingredients? That is the difference her.

Spaghetti with a bite with a bellissimo pomodoro sauce and large juicy meatballs. They do not skimp on the cheese and you can watch them hand grate it on to your hot pasta in the open kitchen.

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If you know a place, “where the locals eat” in the city of Las Vegas that we should be featured on #EatLocal please email us at socialmedia@lasvegasnevada.gov.