By: Danica Serena Stockton By: Danica Serena Stockton | May 23, 2022 | Food & Drink
Giuliana and Bill Rancic partnered with the Melman siblings of Lettuce Entertain You to bring RPM: Italian to The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace Las Vegas. This location is the sixth RPM restaurant and adds to the list of the many well-executed restaurant ventures the Rancics and the Lettuce Entertain You team have embarked on together.
The Rancics glow when sharing, “We are so excited to be in Vegas. This has been seven years in the making to bring RPM to Vegas…It's the first RPM to have an open kitchen. It’s electrifying. It runs like an orchestra.” An open kitchen and a sommelier dedicated wine bar are just a couple of the features of the restaurant guests can enjoy.
The Las Vegas RPM: Italian location is distinct from other RPM establishments with the open kitchen concept and exclusive dishes offered only at the Las Vegas location. The Vegas specific dishes include the Imported Burrata and Caviar, the Dungeness Crab Scampi, the Amalfitana Pizzette with Meyer Lemon and Red Onion, the Black Truffle Chicken Vesuvio and the Gorgonzola-Cured Wagyu Steak.
The appeal of gathering friends, family and colleagues to celebrate the opening still has Bill and Giuliana on cloud nine. The most rewarding part is the positive feedback the two and their team continue to receive regarding the food, beverages and quality of service provided at RPM: Italian.
“When we first opened, the amount of comments I would get on my social media and Bill too about the food [was overwhelming]. For the amount of food comments I get, I’m getting the same amount for the service,” Giuliana expresses. “I knew that the food was going to be talked about but it has got to be both; especially in Las Vegas, we have to have great service. People come here for once in a lifetime experiences.”
Bill shares that the daily reports he reviews each morning shows repeating customers and the amount of times they have visited. “To me that is the greatest accomplishment. We wow and make an impression every time. We can get people in the door once [but] if we don’t over deliver and exceed expectations, there are a lot of other options out there,” he mentions.
The success of the many eateries that the Rancics and Lettuce Entertain You have opened in Chicago, Ill., a city known to have a competitive dining scene, is evidence that together they have found ways to satisfy guests in all areas of the dining experience. With the right team, high quality yet responsibly sourced ingredients and authentic Italian dishes prepared with the influence and direction of Italian native chefs, RPM: Italian provides memorable experiences for all who visit.
Even the most critical of guests remains pleased, Giuliana mentions, “My mom and dad grew up in Italy. My mom cooks Italian food at home everyday. For them to go out for Italian, it better be good…. My mom has an authentic experience when she comes to eat RPM.”
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“Mom will call me after every time she eats RPM to tell me it is just as good,” Giuliana shares. Giuliana’s mother plays a key role in the restaurant business pursuits and success of the Rancics. She inspired Giuliana to find ways to share her mother's highly requested Italian dishes with the world.
“My mom makes bucatini pomodoro. [Growing up] everyone wanted Mama DePandi’s bucatini pomodoro,” Giuliana reflects on her mother’s cooking as an integral part of her childhood and the community she grew up in. She continues, “I had this idea that we should open a small Italian restaurant in Chicago and serve my mom’s bucatini pomodoro.”
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She recalls her initial concept including a very traditional small family diner feel with checkered tablecloths and authentic Italian food. Bill confesses that initially, “I thought it was crazy from a business aspect as an entrepreneur.”
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When the Rancics learned from mutual friends that the Melmans wanted to open an Italian restaurant as well, they were encouraged to discuss a potential partnership to bring both parties' visions to life. The Melman siblings of Lettuce Entertain You changed Bill’s thoughts on the idea and modified Giuliana’s vision with an upscale fine dining approach while maintaining the authenticity of the food and culture.
The partnership seems to be one of the best decisions, Giuliana shares, “[Because of] the Melmans, I will only do business with people that are smarter than us, who have incredible experience [in the industry] and are also good, kind people. It's easy to do a good deal with good people.”
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Giuliana expressed that she could tell from their initial meeting that the Melmans were the right fit. “Our instinct told us that these were good people that had the right intentions. I think that's a huge part of their success. They work hard and don't cut corners,” gushes Giuliana of her beloved business partners.
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Recognizing when the right opportunities present themselves appears to be a common trend in the Rancic's methods when it comes to their endeavors. “Shortly after we opened the first RPM location in Chicago, we realized we were onto something. People loved it! We started looking at other cities and [considered expanding to] Vegas,” Giuliana says.
The two continued to refine the RPM brand with the help of the Melman siblings and opened additional locations in Chicago and other nearby locales during the next seven years following the opening of their first restaurant. Giuliana mentions their expansion to Las Vegas, “We knew it had to be the right time and the right location. This space presented itself and the timing was right. All the pieces fell together.”
With a knack for discerning the most advantageous timing of execution and the most appropriate people to become involved with, the Rancics have achieved so much with their prudent decision-making methods. Food enthusiasts from all ends of the world can enjoy the unique experience of delicious authentic Italian food, impeccable service and the elegant atmosphere of RPM: Italian Las Vegas located in The Forum Shops at Caesar Palace.
Photography by: Photographed by Lindsay Eberly; pixabay.com Michelle Raponi; pixabay.com WikimediaImages