Explore the 'obsessive Italian cuisine' served at the family dining space in Henderson
The Italian eatery’s name Bella Vita translates to “beautiful life,” which matches the restaurant’s elegant aesthetic and picturesque dishes. The award-winning bistro’s mission “is to provide a modern culinary experience” serving “authentic Italian food from scratch using imported Italian products.” In addition to authenticity, guests also experience a modern culinary approach to traditional Italian fare and craft cocktails.
Warm and Welcoming Décor
In March 2021, Bella Vita opened its second location at Blue Diamond and Decatur. The first and original locale debuted in 2015 at The District at Green Valley Ranch. Inside the venue, the dining area features a warm, comfortable ambience enhanced by wooden floors and tables, woodgrain patterned walls, long mirrors and large bar fronting windows providing natural light. The open kitchen and spacious patio for al fresco dining are welcomed pleasantries, too.
The staff Treats guests like Family
Owners husband-and-wife Alex and Sergio Montegrande instill a spirit of hospitality and family. It is worth noting that nearly all of the staff have been retained since opening, as relayed by Restaurant Manager Nina Neville, who added, “The staff is ‘family.’ They have each other’s back and all pitch in. Sergio (Montegrande) fosters an attitude of wanting everyone to feel like an owner and treat the guests accordingly.” The family feel benefits the patron. With everyone helping one another during service, it makes the dining experience appear seamless.
Several starters common to Italian menus are served, such as bruschetta, shrimp scampi, caprese salad and a salad unique to this location, Blue Diamond salad. This specialty dish is made with arugula, apples, blue cheese crumbles, hearts of palm, crispy pancetta and raspberry vinaigrette.
If guests’ leanings include seafood and shellfish, they will want to consider the fruiti di mare pasta, which is loaded with generous portions of mussels, salmon, clams, shrimp and sautéed lobster in a white wine sauce atop imported linguine; or branzino—filet of Mediterranean seabass with eggplant, celery, red pepper and onion caponata in a white wine lemon sauce.
One of their best sellers is the penne alla vodka drenched in a creamy pink vodka sauce. Another pasta star on the menu is the simple, but wonderfully rich linguine basil pesto. Both entrees may be upgraded with chicken or shrimp.
Chicken marsala also is a winner, with chicken breast and mushrooms in a Marsala demi glaze, served with potatoes and sautéed vegetables.
For the meat lovers, there’s sliced NY strip with a demi glaze reduction served with spinach and potatoes. Another carnivorous delight to try is the co-owner Sergio’s favorite: short ribs braised in red wine with root vegetables served over linguine pasta. His stamp of approval marks this as a must-try main course. Additionally, there’s always a go-to classic steak like filet mignon with green pepper corn sauce. Finally, the menu boasts a veal osso bucco—braised veal shank with root vegetable sauce.
Several of the dessert options should be familiar, like tiramisu, cannoli, NY style cheesecake and gelato. Other sweet treats on the menu go beyond the classics. Mix things up a bit with the lemon ripieno—lemon sorbet served in a natural fruit shell, and panna cotta infused with wine-poached pears.
Brunch Menu Standouts
Served Saturday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., the brunch menu offers some of the same starters, salads, pastas, entrees and cocktails served during lunch and dinner, but additional breakfast fare as well.
On the menu, there are starters like charcuterie board and smoked salmon carpaccio; brunch entrees include avocado toast with bacon and goat cheese, steak and eggs, salmon Benedict and croissant with eggs and avocado. Pair these offerings with bottomless premium prosecco and house sparkling wine. Other sips worth tasting are the Veuve Clicqout, La Varca and Moët & Chandon Imperial champagnes.
Must-Try Wine, Beer and Cocktails
The beverage program includes about 50 wines mainly from Italy. The Sonoma and Napa bottles are displayed in an eye-catching wine rack with alternating colored lights, such as the Vignamaggio “Il Morino” Super Tuscan from Tuscany. A small but quality beer list has the local Big Dog’s Las Vegas Lager, Peroni, Anchor Liberty Ale and Unibroue La Fin du Monde Belgian-style tripel.
Fun Fact: This location happens to be the #2 seller in Nevada of this beer.
A craft cocktail program features smoked old fashioned batched and aged in small wooden casks stored above the bar and cocktails like the The Montegrande Old Fashioned. This libation is a mix of Woodinville Bourbon, Orange Angosturo Bitters, Luxardo Cherry and simple syrup garnished with a smoked orange peel. For guests that appreciate a savory sip, the Spicy Rita is another celebrated cocktail made with Casamigos Blanco Tequila, lime juice, simple syrup, cucumber, basil and spicy bitters.
Weekly Happenings—Live Music and Happy Hour
Live music plays on Thursday through Sunday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The sounds are soft enough to carry a conversation over dinner without being drowned out by the band; plus there’s an extensive happy hour menu offered in the bar and patio on weekdays from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Happy hour deals include 16 food menu items priced at $8. The special menu includes bruschetta, salads, spinach ravioli, antipasti misto, fried calamari, gnocchi pesto and shrimp scampi. Alongside the discounted dishes, they also serve a selection of beer and wine for $5 and spirits for $6.
Bella Vita at Blue Diamond is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and till 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Bella Vita will soon get a third location, set to open in Summerlin at Boca Park this summer, complete with a patio and parking valet to assist with the coveted limited parking situation.
Bella Vita at Blue Diamond
4965 Blue Diamond Rd #130