Dining pick of the week: Russo's



4950 S. Rainbow Blvd. at West Tropicana Avenue, 489-4444

Executive chef Rosario Russo came to the U.S. from Palermo, Sicily, in 1982, and we're the better for it, as he continues to share his Southern Italian cuisine with us. This charming restaurant is decorated like an Italian restaurant should be, which makes the delicious food taste even better. Among the popular pasta dinners are linguine with meatballs, cheese ravioli, chicken parmigiana, linguine with tomato and basil, classic Italian baked lasagna, fettuccine Alfredo and rigatoni alla Russo with sautéed onions, mushrooms, ham and peas in tomato cream sauce. Round or Sicilian (square) pizzas can be made with a wide selection of toppings or select a specialty pizza such as vegetarian, white (mozzarella, ricotta, Parmesan, spinach, garlic), shrimp scampi or the Russo with pepperoni, sausage, mushroom, bell peppers and onions. There are calzones, strombolis, pepperoni rolls, cold and hot subs (Italian cheese steak, sausage or eggplant parmigiana and grilled chicken). Several appetizers are fried calamari, bucket of steamed clams, mozzarella sticks, chicken wings and fingers, and garlic bread. Three desserts are cannolis, zeppolis and New York cheesecake. Pizzas start at $9.95 and pasta dinners at $11.95. Russo's is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. -- Jack Bulavsky