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Dining in Las Vegas

Hotel El Rancho Vegas menu, World War II era


Louigi's Italian Charcoal Broiler menu

"There are elsewhere Hickory Rooms, Chinese Rooms, Garden,Clover, Painted Desert, Terrace, Plantation and what-not-rooms in appetizing abundance, all with menus the size of circus posters listing an uncountable assorting of caloric wonderments.” Las Vegas, Playtown, U.S.A. (1955)p. 115-16

In recent years, the media has made much of the fact that Las Vegas has a large number of stellar culinary establishments, noting the great strides it has made over a checkered restaurant past highlighted by 99-cent shrimp cocktails and all-you-can-eat buffets. Such casual dismissals of the past fail to provide insight into the larger story of Las Vegas dining and the restaurants that played a part in the city’s history, and in the memories of resident and tourist alike. Las Vegas menus collected by UNLV Special Collections over the past forty years provide insight into some of this culinary history, and are also evidence of evolving food tastes in our ever-changing city.