What the hell is an Arepa?
I’m still not quite sure, but I can say it’s pretty damn delicious. I’d never heard of this Venezuelan treat until just before setting foot inside this place. It’s just north of the Stratosphere on the BLVD and most Latin-American restaurants in this area are dingy places that make you want to call the health department.
What a surprise this was. A glorious, very welcome surprise.
The place is really clean inside, alarmingly so. Tons of people working in the back which makes sense because it was fairly busy for the time we showed up. We ordered a ton of stuff in an attempt to find the best food in the house but I really had no idea what I was ordering when I did so. Just a tip: ask for help. I’m sure they do it constantly but they know what the good stuff is.
Turns out an Arepa is basically a crispy english muffin stuffed with meat, veggies and sauce. They also have some empanadas that were really fantastic, but the sheer variety of Arepas available make sure everyone is going to be happy. We got shredded beef, shredded pork and kind of a Venezuelan chicken salad with avocado and cilantro.
They’re not reinventing the wheel, but this is some next level comfort food. This is basically halfway between a taco and a big ol sub sandwich. The Arepa crunches with every bite despite the soft juicy filling and they do not skimp on the meat or toppings. Each one is about five bucks each and we had serious trouble finishing the 5 we ordered between the two of us. Will definitely go back and get two at most next time, maybe just one if I’m getting an empanada (pfft yeah right).
The fried plantains were just fine and the fried thing on the left in the picture below was kind of a sad dessert thing that we don’t need to discuss. The hot sauces available, however, were really great and I could add a lot and had a nice burn going without it ruining the meal.
This mountain of food filled me and my friend up for the rest of the day. This easily could’ve fed 3-4 people for less than $40. If you’re walking the strip and want something new, Viva Las Arepas might just be the place to be.
1616 South Las Vegas Blvd. #120
Las Vegas, Nevada 89104
Monday-Sunday 8:00am to 12:00am