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Sometimes when writing my column I say to myself, “Do I really want to write this place up? This place is too good to share.”

But I can’t do that to my loyal followers even though I’m making it harder to get my own reservation. In eight years in Vegas I had never been to the Italian American Social Club (2333 E. Sahara Ave.). Trust me, I’m kicking myself for not finding this place sooner.

Some good friends invited me with a group to join them for dinner there. It felt like a scene from an old mob movie. The vino was flowing as well as the old stories. In the background there was music coming from the bar as music from the Rat Pack era was being sung in the lounge.

Old Italian guys were there with their daughters (wink-wink). The Italian American Social Club is indeed a club but the restaurant is open to the public. The restaurant is open Wednesday thru Sunday from 5-10 p.m. Be sure to make a reservation as this place is packed every night.

We ordered several appetizers, including Banana Peppers stuffed with sausage and cheese. When I was in my 20’s and 30’s I use to go to an Italian restaurant by the racetrack in Pennsylvania where I had my horses. This was my go to appetizer back in the day.

Let’s just say when you hit 40 (I’m long past that) you don’t have the iron stomach for spicy food anymore. This night I wanted to take a trip down memory lane and these spicy peppers were the bomb. If you like spice, order these for sure.

The rest of us with milder tastes get the regular roasted peppers. They pan roast them in garlic and olive oil. We actually ordered two of these. The final appetizer was the fried eggplant, with seasoned breadcrumbs, and cheese crust. I could have made a meal out of it.

I haven’t tasted fried eggplant this good since my mom use to make it. The breading was very light and it complimented the eggplant. I hate when all you taste is breading. This was the best-fried eggplant I have had in the city and the second best wasn’t even close.

For my entrée I went with Penne Rustic. This dish consisted of pasta and rapini tossed with toasted garlic, extra virgin olive oil and homemade sausage. The combination of these ingredients together made for an unbelievable flavor experience. Their homemade sausage is out of this world.

I grew up in my dad’s butcher shop where we made our own sausage and I can say theirs is the real deal.

For dessert you can’t be an authentic Italian restaurant without Tiramisu and Cannoli. The Tiramisu was excellent. Normally I would have ordered a cannoli but they had a spumoni cake on the menu I had to try. They take Spumoni Ice Cream, sliced cherries and layer it on a cookie crumb crust. After a big meal this was the perfect light ending.

The food at the Club was amazing, the portions huge and the prices are so reasonable. Throw in the classic old school décor and Sinatra songs from the lounge and it’s the complete package. For only the third time since writing this column I give the IAC my highest rating of 4 Forks.

Marco D’Angelo is a Race Horse Owner & Breeder, Professional Sports Handicapper & Bettor. You can find Marco at and by following him on twitter: @MarcoInVegas @MarcoInVegas. You can contact him at [email protected].

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