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What to know before you check out the Raiders Tavern & Grill

It's time to eat, Raider Nation.

After months of anticipation, the very first Raiders' themed restaurant and bar is open to the public. The grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony was held March 31 inside the M Resort Spa Casino where the Raiders Tavern and Grill will operate. In attendance at the event was Raiders President Marc Badain, the City of Henderson's mayor Debra March and Raiders legends Marcel Reece and Charles Woodson.

Not that you need them, but here are three good reasons you should take your family and friends for a meal at the new Raiders restaurant ASAP.

First of it's kind for Raider Nation

For starters, the restaurant does a great job of paying tribute to Raiders past and present.

Something that caught my eye from the jump is how catered it is to the history of the Raiders organization with signed footballs and jerseys of legends hanging all around. The restaurant is a first-of-its-kind for the Raiders organization with 3,400 square feet of dining space as well as two bars and more than 45 high-definition TVs. The restaurant is also expected to operate nearly around the clock within the team headquarters' official resort. The M Resort Spa Casino definitely did a fantastic job of making it very classy and appealing for Raider fans from nine to 99 to be able to enjoy themselves.

"We've had a great partnership with the M, and it's just starting," said Raiders President Marc Badain Wednesday afternoon during the grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony. "Today is a really exciting day for us as we celebrate the opening of the Raiders Tavern & Grill."

The food is amazing

Something that President Marc Badain and the M Resort Vice President & General Manager Hussain Mahrous made note of is that they wanted the Raiders Tavern & Grill to be "more than a tradition sports bar."

Mahrous went into detail about the variety of food that he wanted being served at the restaurant. He noted that "of course you'll get a good hamburger and good wing experience" but was determined to bring a more five-star dining experience to the location. I can personally say that goal was accomplished.

I firsthand was able to try several signature dishes the restaurant will be serving, including the soft pretzel bites, the St. Louis Ribs, steak, chicken salad and for dessert, some caramel bread pudding that made me weak. And that's not to forget a slew of delicious cocktails as well. As a 250-pound kid from Alabama, I've been considered someone that never skips a meal – and I for sure lived up to every ounce of that stereotype at the grand opening.

So hopefully that gives you all a decent review of what to expect when you're setting a reservation.

Hall of Fame wine

Last, but certainly not least: Charles Woodson graced us with his presence at the grand opening to join Marc Badain and Hussain Mahrous in cutting the ribbon. The Hall of Fame cornerback appeared to show support for the restaurant as well as introduce his new red blended wine 'Intercept.' Woodson was able to partner with the Tavern & Grill and will have his wine exclusively there for patrons.

"When Charles ask you to do something you pretty much just say yes; it's not really a negotiation" joked Badain on Woodson's wine being in stock at the restaurant. "I think if you have the chance to try his 'Intercept' wine, you'll see why it's in there."

Since his retirement in 2015, Woodson has spent a great deal of time in the Wine Country of Napa Valley, as becoming a vintner has become not only a passion for him, but a great business venture as well. The Raiders' newest member to be selected for Canton is "so appreciative" to have his new wine at the bar for Raider Nation to enjoy.

"Just because I played for the Raiders doesn't mean the things that I have they have to take in and accept." said Charles Woodson regarding his wine. "The great thing is that I do have a great product, I have great wine and we had to sit down and taste through the wine with the food and beverage team here... and they tasted it, and they were impressed with what we had. I'm excited to be apart of this brand new venture here with the Raiders Tavern and just excited to of course be apart of something that the Raiders have going on.

"Even though I retired five years ago, I'm still rolling with the Raiders and it feels good."

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