Grand Bazaar Shops Debuts Three New Venues: Redneck Riviera, Born and Raised, Giordano’s

There’s been a flurry of activity at Grand Bazaar Shops outside Bally’s Las Vegas in recent months, including the unveiling of three shiny new venues: Giordano’s, Redneck Riviera and the newest offering, Born and Raised.

It’s time to explore these new venues as only we can—superficially, and with generous amounts of snark so we don’t fall asleep at the keyboard.

First up is Redneck Riviera. Redneck Riviera is a country bar, founded by John Rich of the country duo Big & Rich.

Redneck Riviera

We are not a country music person, so we honestly wouldn’t recognize a Big & Rich song if it were stapled to our forehead.

Redneck Riviera is billed as “a Vegas experience like none-other.” No, they actually say that, in writing. What makes Redneck Riviera so different? “Great music, great drinks, great people!” We are not making this up.

If you want to stand out from other bars in Las Vegas, you have to give customers something they can’t get anywhere else, and you certainly can’t find great music, great drinks or great people, so Rednect Riviera is pretty much guaranteed to succeed.

Hey, we warned you about the snark.

Redneck Riviera

You know, just the typical Las Vegas marketing strategy of having young women stand on barrels.

Beyond the country music and any number of white people attempting to dance, Redneck Riviera also has some great decorative touches.

First, there’s a saddle-shaped disco ball over the dance floor.

Redneck Riviera

It’s like the love child of John Wayne and Liberace. Millennial translation: Oh, nevermind.

There’s also an American flag fashioned from beer cans over one of the establishment’s two bars.

Redneck Riviera

‘Merica.

In the men’s room, you’ll find urinals made from beer kegs. They’re so cool, we’re tempted to listen to a portion of a country song.

Redneck Riviera bathroom

This is going directly to the top of our list of offbeat Las Vegas photo ops.

Also in the restroom are sinks made from tires. The faucets are gas pumps. Seriously charming.

Redneck Riviera bathroom

You’re welcome, Asian tour groups.

One of the best selling points of Redneck Riviera is it doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously.

The vibe is casual and often rowdy, the staff is friendly, and Redneck Riviera serves a niche clientele likely to stray from Toby Keith’s restaurant at Harrah’s and Gilley’s at Treasure Island to give this new honky-tonk hangout a try.

Next, we move to Born and Raised.

Born and Raised is an offshoot of an existing, locally-owned bar and pub. Named Born and Raised. Please try and keep up.

Born and Raised

St. Paddy’s Day seemed a good day to visit, hoochwise.

Born and Raised at Grand Bazaar Shops is technically named “Born and Raised CRAFT PUB.” Seriously. The “craft pub” is capitalized in all the media and marketing materials.

It’s as if Born and Raised suddenly contracted Tourette Syndrome.

Born and Raised has a tiny footprint, even by Grand Bazaar Shops standards. The bar has seating for about 14 people inside, with another 12 seats just outside.

Born and Raised

Born and Raised is so small you could fit it in your pocket. But don’t. That’s shoplifting.

While other Born and Raised locations in Las Vegas serve food, the Grand Bazaar Shops outpost does not. Which is probably for the best, as we recently had our first encounter with Born and Raised’s food, and it fell firmly into the “Meh” category.

Yes, “Meh” is a category. Other categories include “Mind-Blowing” (Pizza Rock, downtown), “Forgettable” (Beerhaus at The Park), “Regrettable” (The Still at Mirage) and “It’ll Do in a Pinch, Especially If We’re Wasted” (everywhere else on The Strip).

Born and Raised

We look forward to getting to know each and every Born and Raised cocktail personally.

Born and Raised offers a menu of signature cocktails, each runs $13. There is also beer, although we have never personally had a beer, so we aren’t able to comment upon the breadth or quality of the selection.

Finally, we get all up inside Giordano’s.

Giordano’s is a name that may sound familiar. The chain is known for its Chicago-style stuffed deep dish pizza.

Giordano's Las Vegas

Giordano’s sits astride a Starbucks that once announced it would serve liquor. Never happened, to our chagrin, whatever a “chagrin” might actually be.

Giordano’s has gone malls deep into Grand Bazaar Shops, with what amounts to three locations. There’s the second floor main restaurant, another dining area and bar on the ground level (fancifully called the Grand Allee walkway), and there’s also a walk-up window.

Giordano's Grand Bazaar Shops

The Giordano surname has its roots in “Yarden,” the Hebrew name of the Jordan river. Yes, we have exhausted our supply of photo captions.

We’re not going to sugarcoat it, Giordano’s is disappointing on any number of levels.

First, the wait time if you order pizza is agonizing. It took nearly an hour to get our simple cheese pizza, and the restaurant was pretty much empty.

During our wait, staff was sweeping up and mopping, one of our biggest pet peeves in any restaurant. (We were there two hours before closing time, but it was obvious employees were champing at the bit to close up shop.) Adding to the unpleasantness of our visit, staff members were moving chairs around the dining room not by lifting them, but by dragging them, lending the restaurant roughly the same welcoming ambiance as a smoke detector testing facility.

Giordano's Las Vegas

We predict only one of the Giordano’s spaces will survive. It’s anybody’s guess which.

It was only after our pizza arrived that the WTF began in earnest.

Stuffed pizza isn’t actually pizza, it turns out. It’s 14 pounds of melted cheese ladled onto a flaky, flavorless crust. A layer of sauce sits on the cheese, clearly embarrassed to be part of such a bastardization of the world’s greatest food.

Giordano's pizza

Fun fact: The word “no” is the same in English and Italian. Apply liberally at Giordano’s.

We’d love to say we’ll be back to try the thin crust pizza at Giordano’s, but why would we when there are so many other, far-more-worthy pizza offerings in the neighborhood? We’d hit Pin-Up Pizza at Planet Hollywood, Martorano’s at Paris or The Pizzeria (also known as “Secret Pizza”) at Cosmopolitan 100 times before doing Giordano’s again.

Sorry, but pizza is serious business, and what they serve at Giordano’s barely qualifies. It’s more like fondue, although that’s probably doing a disservice to fondue.

Here’s a better look at the Giordano’s menu, and here’s the pizza menu, because you wisely don’t blindly trust the opinion of blogs when it comes to pies.

If you love Giordano’s, we love hearing differing viewpoints. Or at least pretend to.

Giordano's Las Vegas

When it doubt, margarita.

It’s great to see Grand Bazaar Shops bringing in new talent. The mall seems to churn through tenants (mall management would owe harsh penalties to Caesars Entertainment, owners of Bally’s, if Grand Bazaar Shops falls below a certain percentage of occupancy), but a few successful bars and restaurants could give some of the millions of people who walk by each year a reason to stop.

It was recently announced Philly Pretzel Factory is coming to Grand Bazaar Shops later in the year. We’re struggling to contain our excitement.

Our friends at Eater Vegas say another restaurant will open across from Giordano’s patio bar, Blue Ribbon Fried Chicken. We’ve tried it, and we’re filing that one in the “Forgettable” category, too.

Hey, not everything’s going to stick. Only time will tell which venues will thrive or expire. In Vegas, change is always on the menu.

Grand Bazaar Shops Debuts New Venues

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28 thoughts on “Grand Bazaar Shops Debuts Three New Venues: Redneck Riviera, Born and Raised, Giordano’s

  1. Bouldersteve

    Redneck Riviera looks like it may be worth a visit. That pizza at Giordano is giving me stomach cramps just looking at it

    Reply
  2. EnuffBull

    LOVE Vital Vegas!

    Granted, the Giordano’s is new and may not have their full act together, but do NOT bother with a thin crust pizza there. Thin pizza is thin pizza the world over.

    You either make sweet, sweet love to a well-crafted, Chicago-style deep dish pizza, or wrap a generic New York-style thin slice around your own pepperoni-pecker and jerk off to the same old floppy slice of what you’re used to.

    All that said, Pizza Rock rocks!!!

    Reply
      1. EnuffBull

        ‘Tis a pizza. A true deep dish pizza. Not a casserole. Get over yourself and get thee to a true Chicago pie shop!

        Reply
          1. EnuffBull

            I did and I do… sorry that didn’t translate well. I KNEW who you were talking about!
            Let’s share a piece of casserole over it. 😀

  3. Doug Bergman

    I was very skeptical when I heard that Giordanos was opening in Las Vegas. I expected it to have all the trappings of an airport concourse Pizza Hut. However, if it takes an hour to get your pizza, that means they are doing something right. Done properly, Chicago style pizza takes a long time to bake and most places outside Chicago who pretend to serve it instead serve something inferior that can be churned out to the impatient.

    Now for the manifesto portion of my comment: The pizza wars are a result of people talking past each other and need to stop now. Ordering a Chicago deep dish pizza and expecting a New York or Naples style pizza is like asking for a watermelon and being served a cantaloupe. They may technically both be melons, but they are completely different animals (or vegetables, or more specifically fruits, or pizzas), and either can be either sublime or horrible. If it really tasted bad, maybe it was bad; after all, you are 2000 miles from Chicago. Or maybe it was simply not what you expected. Also you are the first person in the history of Chicago pizza to order a deep dish pizza with cheese only. I’m surprised they even accepted your order. You want it with sausage and mushroom at a minimum, or if you face dietary constraints, at least order it with spinach and mushroom.

    Reply
      1. RustyHammer

        They may serve a “casserole” in Vegas, but at competent Giordanos locations they serve pizza.

        I don’t get it, but if calling pizza a casserole gives you a stiffy, who are we to judge?

        Reply
      2. Doug Bergman

        Yeah, then we would start hearing from the casserole people about how it should be called something else. Meanwhile, I’ve heard Italians complain that New York style pizza is not pizza. I have to stop letting myself get into these discussions.

        Reply
  4. RustyHammer

    I give ’em points for effort at Redneck Riviera… they didn’t simply slap a few cowpoke decorations inside a bar and call it a “cowboy bar.”

    I can’t profess much knowledge for Big or Rich, either. I know two things: Rubes seem to think some cheesy ditty about saving a horse and riding a cowboy is a great song, and they have some dude they like to trot out called “Cowboy Troy.” From what I can gather, he’s supposed to be a rapping cowboy. I lack enough info about this “cowboy” to know if his presence is brilliant or insulting. Either way, I’m not interested in learning the answer.

    Reply
    1. RustyHammer

      If Scott has never heard that terrible song, his life is better for it. And I’m sure he’s heard it as background noise more than once in his life, but didn’t know what he was listening to. We should all be so fortunate.

      Reply
  5. RustyHammer

    God damn, when are people going to stop calling it pizza? It offends my delicate sensibilities. It’s a fuckin’ casserole, and it’s about time people quit pretending the shit is pizza.

    IT’S CASSEROLE, BITCH!

    Reply
  6. Rich Johnson

    Giordano’s must have set a world record for a soft opening. I ate at the outdoor bar the second week of January, just after CES. The bartender warned me that it would be 20 minutes. It took 40 minutes. I’m no deep dish virgin, having lived in Chicago for a bit. But that was not worth it.

    Reply
    1. Photoncounter

      I’ve eaten at the Giordano’s near Midway airport. About 45 minutes for a “pizza” that didn’t impress. Pizza in Sicily has been the best ever and my gold standard.

      I have no use for the Grand Bizarre Shops, prefer the wasteland that was there before this useless endeavor. At least you could see the occasional bum fights!

      Reply
  7. wtfunk555

    I went to school in Chicago and Giordano’s was one of the more crappy places for deep dish pizza. I’m honestly not sure why people rave about that place. Whenever I went there, the crust was all runny, the tomato sauce too salty and the cheese was disgusting.

    Reply
  8. Wolfdog

    Missed checking out the Bazaar, last two trips. Now I got three more reasons to skip it on the next trip.

    Reply
  9. Adam Mace

    Nice one, Scott. This story about whether Chicago style deep dish qualifies as pizza really inflamed some passions. 26 comments so far.

    For your next article, consider posing the classic age old question, “Is a HOT DOG a SANDWICH?”

    Love your Vegas info. If there’s something new to talk about, it shows up on your blog or twitter faster that any other Vegas news source.

    Reply
  10. mozoem

    this IS Chicago pizza, if you don’t like this pizza you don’t “Chicago style” pizza. This style IS CHICAGOdeep dish pizza. go eat your NY style pizza if you like thin crust but you won’t get a better tasting pizza anywhere in Vegas. We travel from WI to IL to eat this pizza and in Vegas it’s the same.

    Reply

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