In Christine on The Scene by Christine McKellar

James Beard Award-Winning Chef Shawn McClain’s Flavorful Cuisine and Craft Beer Program

FIVE50 Pizza Bar, the first casual concept from James Beard award-winning Chef pizza interiorShawn McClain, is now open at ARIA Resort & Casino. Following the success of Sage, his first restaurant at the property, Chef McClain’s newest Las Vegas outpost is serving up wood-fired pizzas, flavorful small plates, artisanal charcuterie, international cheeses, seasonal salads, handmade pastas and decadent desserts, all complemented by an impressive collection of carefully selected craft beers.

What’s in a name? FIVE50 is inspired by the prime temperature at which Chef McClain’s wood-fired pizza is cooked. Guests on-the-go can enjoy sizeable pieces of these signature pies for $5.50 at the restaurant’s slice counter, which also serves two draft beer choices.

FIVE50 Pizza Bar Features:

• Farm-Fresh Fare. Known for his ability to create complex yet approachable flavor profiles, Chef McClain’s dynamic culinary expertise is exemplified with the diversity of FIVE50’s menu – which features signature pizzas, Italian-inspired specialty dishes and home-style desserts – all prepared with the freshest seasonal ingredients. Highlights include: 

o Pizza. FIVE50’s 16-inch pies are baked to perfection in a wood-fired oven; the crispy crust blends properties of New York and Naples-style pizzas, but is a signature creation pizza sliceof Chef McClain’s. Elevated with rich sauce and creamy cheese, flavors range from traditional to gourmet such as the Gotham, topped with pepperoni, sausage, salami, mozzarella and Grana Padano; and the Farmstead, with prosciutto, crème fraiche and country olives, finished with an over-easy farm egg. Other unique varieties include the clam-topped North Beach and Truffle pizzas. Guests also can create their own with choices of more than 20 toppings.

o Specialties. FIVE50 offers an eclectic Meat & Cheese Bar featuring artisanal charcuterie and international cheeses. Flavorful small plates include Wood-Fired Clams and Linguica Sausage, Marinated Octopus Crostini, and Creamy Polenta and Farm Egg, to name a few. FIVE50’s salads feature the best of seasonal produce with refreshing flavors such as Arugula and Fennel, and Heirloom Tomatoes with Burrata Cheese for summer. All pasta is hand-rolled daily; signature pastas include such options as Ricotta Cavatelli with pistachio pesto; and Pigs & Truffles, a rich, pork shoulder cannelloni with spinach, béchamel and summer truffles. 

o Dessert.  Home-style sweets with a gourmet spin offer the perfect ending to meals at FIVE50. Guests can enjoy an array of indulgences such as Milk Chocolate-Lavender Custard served layered in a miniature mason jar; the FIVE50 ‘Beer’ Float with caramelized banana, malted milk ice cream, salted caramel and Young’s Double Chocolate Stout; and a unique Ice Cream Sandwich, with a choice of ice cream flavor served between two pizzelle cookies and paired with a sip of Italian soda.

• Craft Beers. With more than 50 beers offered, FIVE50’s all-American draft selection steamed musselsfeatures 11 microbrews on tap with a focus on regional American craft varieties. Its eclectic bottle list showcases the best beer from around the globe. The menu includes seasonal offerings from labels such as Dogfish Head, Sierra Nevada and Las Vegas microbreweries, Tenaya Creek and Big Dog’s; tried-and-true craft favorites such as Stone Arrogant Bastard and Rogue Dead Guy Ale; and premium imports like Chimay and Unibroue. FIVE50’s beverage program is rounded out with three gluten-free beers, four ciders, an extensive by-the-glass wine list and specialty cocktails to satisfy all kinds of thirsty guests.

• FIVE50 Fun.

Located off ARIA’s casino floor adjacent to the Race & Sports Book, FIVE50 Pizza Bar is now open daily from 11:30 a.m. to midnight; the slice counter is open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Photos compliments of MGM Resorts International