Postrio embodies most of what get when you think ‘Celebrity Chef.’ Yes, you will find yourself amidst a glorious ambiance, whether in the rustic interior or on the patio amidst colorful St. Mark’s performers’ frequent singing and dancing. Yes, you will find eclectic and extravagant fare, conceptualized by Wolfgang Puck and executed through Chef Scott Irestone. But no, you will not find the inflated prices that can come with other famous names, nor will you feel like ‘just another customer’ under the hospitable care of GM Warren Richards and an absolutely superb staff.
The menu holds an intriguing compilation of Italian, Asian and Americana influence, featuring each cuisine in a mutually exclusive light, but fusing bits and pieces with each other just enough to make everything you order new and different. A bowl of asparagus soup reaches the lips with creamy indulgence and an earthy tone that pairs right with hunks of crab and a crème fraiche drizzle. The tuna tartare is anything but traditional, double the size of most of its counterparts and made with top-quality seafood that melds beautifully with thin-sliced avocado, pickled ginger and crispy wontons. Calamari is skillfully prepared to be among the lightest and most tender you’ll get while a trio of housemade sausages, each paired with a specialty mustard, integrates hearty, sweet and zesty.
The best way about moving forward is to share a course of pasta and pizza before your entrée. Pizzas are thin crust with fresh ingredients, often picked by Puck himself. Tomatoes and meats carry more zest than you’d ever expect here in the desert. Pastas, served in appetizer portions, hold distinct character from creamy cheese ravioli to spring pea agnolotti with seasonal mushrooms.
A must-try entrée is the black cod, cooked to perfection to ‘melt just by looking at it.’ Completed with a light Asian-infused cream and chilled noodles for an interesting blend of hot and cold, rich and refreshing. You may find duck on the specials menu, which carries mild flavor but is truly highlighted by the ricotta gnocchi served alongside. Chicken Picatta adds overall versatility to the menu with lemon caper butter sauce and brocollini.
Selections continue to turn this way and that with steak frites, Scottish salmon and pancetta-wrapped meatloaf, and the wine list will make any pairing work. Dessert has a few kinks to work out, with chocolate beignets and chocolate cake that could use more fluff and moisture respectively. Signature cocktails, on the other hand, carry the same class and complexity as the food. Postrio also offers a spectacular brunch, continuing the motif of upstanding tastes and excellent value amidst a pleasant daytime atmosphere.
Postrio is located in the Venetian’s St. Mark’s Square, near Caneletto and Otto. Open from 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily. Reservations accepted. Out-the-door price for split appetizer, entrée, split dessert and 1-2 drinks is ~$65/person. This review was comped. For more information call (702) 796-1110 or visit Postrio online.