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Las Vegas Weekend Guide for Angelenos, Summer 2016

Your quick hit guide to everything Sin City, all in one weekly article

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Amelinda B. Lee

Going to Vegas this weekend? Planning a trip in the near future? Eater is here for you, with a quick, handy guide to the best in Sin City, from restaurants and bars to nightlife. This article will be updated every week with the newest restaurant openings, as well as one weekly recommendation on where to dine.

The essentials

This week's news roundup

— There's no better place to indulge in a gluttonous brunch than Sin City. Here's a massive guide with 72 places to cure a night of overindulgence.

— It seems like the Grand Bazaar shops are constantly under construction. The most recent wave will bring in the fourth location of Sin City Brewing Co that will take over the former Sandwich Haven. Also incoming is Turkish ice cream retailer Marash, deep dish pizza specialist Giordano's, and John Rich of Big & Rich's honky-tonk bar Redneck Riviera.

— Brett Raymer and Wayde King of Animal Planet's reality TV show Tanked recently announced that they were opening a restaurant called Get Tanked in Las Vegas, what they hope will be the first of many seafood chain restaurants around the country. Though still in early development with no announced location, PETA had some choice words for the concept, exclaiming, "serving fish at an aquarium is like serving poodle burgers at a dog show." Dig into the drama here.

Restaurant pick of the week: é by José Andrés

Those who like to plan three months in advance now have one more night to try to get tickets to the exclusive é by José Andrés inside the chef's Jaleo at the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas. Now the chef's table with room for eight and two seatings a night opens on Tuesday nights in addition to Wednesday through Sunday for the 20-plus course dinner. Chefs often prepare and plate dishes right in front of guests, using novelty dishware, including plaster replicas of Andrés' hands.

While the menu changes frequently, guests almost guarantee that Cava Sangria, an edible sphere cocktail filled with white sangria made from Cava, gin and fruit as well as the empanada made with a pillowy cotton candy shell, filled with foie gras and corn nuts, make the menu. The dinner of a lifetime costs $250 per person not inclusive of beverage, tax ,or gratuity. Wine pairing options start at $130, but guests can also choose a $300 or $500 option as well. Get reservations here. —Susan Stapleton [Photo: Jill Paidar]

September 2, 2016

— There's always plenty of moving and shaking in Las Vegas, but what are the restaurants that everyone's waiting for? Eater Vegas takes a deep dive into the city's most anticipated openings that span from David Chang's westernmost outpost of Momofuku to Gordon Ramsay's upcoming fish and chips shack in The Linq.

— Can't get enough of football season? Luckily Sin City has plenty of fantastic sports bars with great nibbles to enjoy the game. Here's 20 of them.

— There's been a bit of bad blood between former tenants of Pawn Plaza and landlord Rick Harrison. With the very recent shutter of Smoke's Poutinerie, Inna Gadda di Pizza, and Pawn Donut, one anonymous tenant points the finger at the Pawn Stars star. Harrison sets the record straight with what was and wasn't included in the contract, and explains, "I am a landlord. I want them to make money. Making money is my third or fourth favorite thing in the world."

Restaurant pick of the week: Carnevino Italian Steakhouse

[Photo: Amelinda B Lee]

Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich's ode to the Italian steakhouse at the Palazzo is one of those places you can discover for the first time or rediscover for the 50th. For the beginner, order the classic New York strip, aged a minimum of 90 days and served with just a drizzle of olive oil and sea salt. For the regular, expand your horizons with a cut from the Riserva program. The off-the-menu dish features cuts of beef hand selected and aged six to eight months for a robust, intense flavor almost like blue cheese. Top off any meal with the melon sorbetto made from melon juice and puréed melon for a lactose-free frozen dessert. —Susan Stapleton

August 19, 2016

Life is Beautiful, the three-day music, art, and food festival, is returning to Downtown Las Vegas September 23 to 25. Eater Vegas has the exclusive lineup of the culinary talent, which you can scope out here.

— Life is Beautiful isn't the only culinary festival taking place in Las Vegas in the upcoming weeks. Stepping up the game is Love & Vine at The Palazzo on October 7 from 7 to 10:30 p.m. at The Azure Pool. Featuring ten Master Chefs of France that include Roland Passot of La Folie in San Francisco and Olivier Dubreuil of The Venetian and Palazzo, the food and wine pairing event is priced at $104.58 or two for $185.72. More info at

— Turns out Pawn Plaza wasn't such a good idea after all. Not only did Smoke's Poutinerie close earlier this week, but today came news that Pawn Donut & Coffee and Inna Gadda di Pizza are also biting the dust. Yikes.

— Remember legendary hype man and clock chain-wearing Flava Flav? Dying to try his fried chicken? We're not really either, but those interested can get it at Rockhouse at the Grand Canal Shoppes.

Restaurant pick of the week: Libertine Social

The newest restaurant on the Strip brings a far more social atmosphere to Mandalay Bay. Libertine Social from James Beard winner Shawn McClain features a space that "encompasses the social spirit of a house party" with gourmet toasts and dips, flatbreads, sausage boards and more. Warm Dungeness crab dip, duck pastrami on toast, artisanal sausage boards and small plates such as a parmesan churro and marinated ahi tuna cones fill the menu.

Larger plates include the Libertine Burger made with a Creek Stone Farms beef patty, cheese made in-house, locally sourced tomatoes, caramelized onions and a bordelaise sauce as well as harissa-rubbed mussels, a Snake River Farms wagyu skirt steak and the Snake River Farms wagyu flat iron. Fish cuts change daily based on seasonality and availability. The cocktail program from Tony Abou-Ganim spreads between two bars, a dining room, chef's table and patio. —Susan Stapleton

August 12, 2016

— Didn't win big at the craps table? Not to worry, your Sin City getaway doesn't necessarily have to break the bank. With plenty of on and off the Strip options, here are 18 of Vegas' best cheap eats.

— The Halal Guys have finally descended upon Las Vegas, with all the coveted white sauce packets your heart desires. Located in Spring Mountain Square, it should become a popular local haunt to to soak up a night of overindulgence. The franchise has plans to expand on to the Strip sometime soon.

— Want to eat like a Vegas local? The GM of Carmine's shares his three favorite restaurants: Due Forni, Lotus of Siam and Monta Ramen. Get the scoop on what to order here.

— There are millions of brunch options in Las Vegas, but how do you know which ones are worth the limited time you have on your weekend trip? Luckily Eater Vegas has done the work for you, narrowing down the 37 essential brunches with something for everybody.

August 5, 2016

— The Palazzo's newest show Baz - Star Crossed Love, inspired by Baz Luhrmann's films Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge, and The Great Gatsby, is offering some pretty fantastic themed cocktails to sip before the show. Think drinks like the Jay Gatsby Julep with Basil Hayden's Bourbon, mint, and sugar, and the Gilded Sidecar, a gorgeous concoction of Hennessy VS, Grand Marnier, lemon juice, honey, and edible gold flakes.

— After building a cult following first in New York and now in LA, The Halal Guys is ready to take over Las Vegas. The first Sin City location will debut on Friday, August 12 at 10 a.m. with chicken, rice, and white sauce galore.

— Your weekend Vegas getaway doesn't need to be a pricey one. Check out this massive guide of happy hours on and off the Strip.

Dave and Buster's is opening in Downtown Summerlin, with food, booze, tons of sports-playing screens, and all the games you could ever hope for.

Restaurant pick of the week: Mercato della Pescheria

[Photo: Facebook]

A massive new Italian seafood restaurant now calls Las Vegas home. Miami import Mercato della Pescheria debuted on St. Marks Square inside the Wolfgang Puck's former Postrio space at the Grand Canal Shoppes, the shopping mall at the Venetian and Palazzo. Alberto Cabrera helms the kitchen that serves specialties such as Alaskan King crab legs by the pound, Chilean sea bass, a Florida lobster tail risotto and more. Tuck onto the patio that spill out onto St. Mark's Square at the shopping center, on the marble bar or inside  the 16,479-square-foot space that resembles a rustic market with plaid tablecloths and an open kitchen. —Susan Stapleton

Restaurant pick of the week: Beauty & Essex

[Photo: Amelinda B Lee]

If you've managed to snag a table at the Cosmopolitan's hottest new restaurant, you'd figure Beauty & Essex was cooked up as an in-house extension of the Cosmo brand. A cheeky, too-hip-for-its-own-good pawn shop facade gives way to a dimly lit dining room exploding with the excited chatter of Vegas' young and restless. In actuality, the restaurant comes by way of New York's Lower East Side, and it hits the standard notes of a crowd-pleasing menu (proteins like scallops and jerk chicken and a host of pastas) with a couple surprises thrown in. Don't skip the French Onion Soup Dumplings. —Euno Lee

July 29, 2016

— Nothing screams baller like ordering an off-menu item. Show off your restaurant prowess by ordering one of these 13 secret dishes in Las Vegas.

— The Linq has no dearth of great restaurants, but now Virgil's Real Barbecue will add another dining contender, taking over the long-shuttered Asian street market-themed F.A.M.E. The $2 million, over 15,000 square foot restaurant will offer regional barbecue from Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas, the Carolinas, and Missouri.

— Can't miss the Olympics even on your weekend Sin City getaway? Here are 20 great on and off-Strip places to get your sports fix.

— John Rich of Big & Rich (that's a country band, if you didn't know) will open up Redneck Riviera directly above Wahlburgers in the Grand Bazaar Shops. Prepare "to git down" in this honky tonk bar with cold beer and live music. Fun.

Restaurant pick of the week: Bardot Brasserie

[Photo: Amelinda B Lee]

Oh la la. Michael Mina may be based out of San Francisco, but he gained fame and an empire in Las Vegas. In 2015, the chef debuted his fourth restaurant, Bardot Brasserie at Aria, in Sin City. Guests can find French cuisine, or what Mina calls French comfort food, at dinner and brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. Seared foie gras Lyonnaise, duck wings à l'orange, shellfish towers, sole meunière and loup de mer are just some of the dishes on the dinner menu. Diners at brunch can find a French omelet, croque madame and a hunter's waffle with glazed duck confit, poached eggs and sauce maltaise. Even the cocktails here tout the eccentricities of Paris's arrondissements, paying homage to the classics such as the Sidecar from Harry's Bar and Serendipity from Bar Hemingway, each with their own twists. —Susan Stapleton

July 22, 2016

— It's all about over-the-top brunches in Vegas to recover from a night of overindulgence. With everything from gluttonous buffets to off-Strip gems, here are 72 places to satisfy morning hunger pains.

— LeBron James celebrated his NBA Championship this week in true Sin City form. The evening kicked off with a dinner at Beauty & Essex before the star athlete made an outrageous entrance at Marquee Nightclub in the Cosmopolitan. Check out the photos here.

— Looking to bring your Pokemon Go game to Las Vegas? Apparently you can currently throw poké balls at Charizard close to Charlie Palmer Steak Las Vegas at the Four Seasons. Find out more tips in this handy story.

— You don't always have to break the bank to get your sushi fix in Las Vegas. Here are some of the best sushi happy hour deals the city has to offer.

Restaurant picks of the week:

Fancy Italian-style seafood at Costa di Mare

[Photo: Barbara Kraft/Wynn Las Vegas]

Every week, Wynn Las Vegas flies in more than one ton of fresh fish and shellfish from the Mediterranean, including the prized live langoustine, at Costa di Mare. Chef Mark LoRusso now flies in some hard-to-find discoveries found along the Italian coastline for more adventurous dining. These three weekly shipments of 220 pounds of fish feature selections such as Tuscan Sea Palamita, a relative of the tuna and mackerel served raw as carpaccio with artichokes and a drizzle of gremolata or poached with olive oil in a tonnato sauce for beef tartare; Cicala di Mare a flat prehistoric lobster grilled whole over charcoal or prepared over pasta with tomato and garlic; and Mantis Shrimp, grilled and served with lemon and parsley. Even more adventurous? Try Mormora, a moist fish roasted whole with olive oil and white wine; Centrolofo, part of the frittura di paranza Mediterranea dish served fried with crispy artichoke and pickled lemon; or Costardelle, a bluefish served fried. —Susan Stapleton

Brunch at Morel's Steakhouse



For a city that parties hard into the wee hours, a restorative brunch carries special importance. Morel's Steakhouse at the Palazzo is up to the challenge, with fresh oysters, excellent lox-and-bagel, decadent croque madames with buttery, crunchy sourdough, and a Bloody Mary prepared tableside that packs quite the kick. The normally dark dining room and its luxurious woods is transformed into a gorgeous, airy space when exposed to natural lighting. The meal is casual and the prices run a little steep, but is there a more comfortable seat from which to lounge down the hours to night time? Probably not. —Euno Lee

July 15, 2016

— With the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas' sixth birthday coming up in December, the hotel and casino is spending major dough to add new dining options. Zuma, an international izakaya with 11 locations around the world, cashes in with a $5 million dollar construction budget with a scheduled late 2016 debut. Also on the docket is David Chang's Momofuku and Christina Tosi's Milk Bar, which just filed permits for the demolition of a retail store.

— Sin City has no lack of celebrity chef-driven restaurants. Well now Restaurant Impossible star Robert Irvine is getting in the game, with a restaurant he says via Twitter "will be the BEST in Vegas," no less. The project will land in the Tropicana sometime next year. Get the details here.

— Where will the Cleveland Cavaliers celebrate their NBA championship? Catch LeBron James host the fete at Marquee Nightclub on Monday, July 18.

— Can't get enough Indian food? Here's the best Las Vegas has to offer to satisfy the itch.

Restaurant pick of the week: Pub 365

[Photo: Amelinda B Lee]

Need an excuse to drink 365 craft beers? The new Pub 365 at the Tuscany offers just that, along with beertails, rare finds from the Unicorn List and even food including burgers, tacos and grilled flatbreads. Check out that rare beer list for Founders Brewing Co.'s Kentucky Breakfast Stout, Firestone Walker Brewing Co.'s Stickee Monkee and a range of selections from The Bruery, a boutique craft brewery in Orange County, California. Those beertails include the Angry Lion, a take on the classic Lion's Tail from the 1930s with a twist of cider; Strange Brew, a gin cocktail with velvet falernum, lime juice, simple syrup and pineapple topped with IPA; and In the Saison, a play on a whiskey sour with the added tart apple flavor from Belgian Saison. Join the loyalty program to keep tabs of the beers you drank and even collect gifts from the resort east of the Strip. —Susan Stapleton

July 8, 2016

— Las Vegas may not be the first place you think of when it comes to a city rich with iconic dishes, but Sin City has plenty of must-order plates. With everything from Jaleo's paella to Guy Savoy's truffle soup, here's everything you should be eating.

— Sin City is known for overindulgence, and nothing fits the bill like Double Barrel Roadhouse's new deep-fried Twinkie made with raspberry tempura batter, powdered sugar, and chocolate sauce. Wow.

— The bachelor party mecca was recently visited by comedian Kevin Hart, who feted for five days in serious style. Find out the details of the debauchery here.

— 32-year-old Palace Station is getting a fancy multi-million dollar makeover, adding a 27-story tower, new pool, bingo hall, movie theater, and a rooftop restaurant. Should be a nice upgrade for the north Strip.

— Another day, another Vegas lounge going under the knife. This time it's Caesars Palace's Seahourse Lounge. The mermaid-statue decorated lounge will get a $2.8 million dollar investment to update its 13-year-old digs.

Restaurant pick of the week: Goose Island Pub

Photo: Bradley Martin

Another taste of Chicago flies into Las Vegas with the new Goose Island Pub at the Hard Rock Hotel. That means a collection of eight of Goose Island Brewery's craft beers on tap including Brandy County Brand Stout, aged for two years in 35-year-old Bourbon barrels for $100 a pop. Try the $8 Spruce Goose flight of four beers with a name that nods to Vegas' Howard Hughes roots. Even dishes with a Windy City flair make the menu, including a cast iron Chicago pizza dip for $9 with marinara, mozzarella, pepperoni, basil giardinera and a garlic crust; the Cub Club for $14 with roasted turkey, sugar cured bacon, lettuce, tomato, roasted garlic mayo and toasted wheat; and the Lake Shore Drive fish and chips for $15 with beer-battered cod, French fries, malt vinegar and IPA tartar sauce.  —Susan Stapleton

July 1, 2016

— First things first, Eater Vegas has rounded up the best of the best with a quick pocket guide to essential restaurants, bars, and neighborhoods in Sin City. If you have one thing to understand the city's dining scene, this is it.

— Populist craft beer pub Eureka! is going into the heart of Downtown Las Vegas. Known for burgers and beer-friendly bites, it takes over the former The Beat Coffeehouse.

—Staying out late this weekend in Vegas? Here's your guide to late night dining, including the iconic Peppermill's to Grand Lux Cafe.

— The Cosmopolitan's massive Chandelier Bar is getting a huge upgrade on the casino level. Don't worry, the mezzanine and second floor bars still get service, though the newish Clique would be a worthy alternative if you're looking for a place to pre-party before hitting the clubs.

— It seems to be the time for interior facelifts in Vegas, as The Palm steakhouse is getting a million dollar rehab inside the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace.

Restaurant pick of the week: Wahlburgers

Wahlburgers Las Vegas kiosk Bradley Martin

Wahlburgers Las Vegas kiosk

It's only taken one year, nine months and 11 days, but brothers Mark, Donnie and Paul Wahlberg finally opened Wahlburgers at the Grand Bazaar Shops to the delight of fans of the A&E show Wahlburgers. The counter and table service restaurant has already launched its own drink and souvenir merchandise kiosk at the outdoor shopping center closer to the Strip.

A full bar featuring three TVs sits inside and guests can dine at tables with the brand's signature green chairs, in cream colored booths or out on the patio. Find Wahlburger's dishes such as the $12.95 O.F.D. Originally from Dorchestah and $14.95 Triple Decker burgers. Sides include onion rings, fries or tater tots each available for $4.95, or pay tribute to the boys' own mother with "Alma's Classic Macaroni," priced at $8.95. Wahlburgers —Susan Stapleton

June 24, 2016

This week's news roundup

—Robin Leach (you know, Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous) is out from the Las Vegas Sun and in at the Review Journal. The longtime gossip columnist tends to own the celebrity culture beat in Sin City.

—If you love sandwiches, you should see this epic roundup of the best ones in town, from the bao at Fat Choy to the croque monsieur at Payard.

—Lunch service takes a break at D.O.C.G. inside the Cosmo, which is a bummer because it was one of the better spots for a sit down lunch on the Strip.

—The GM at Morel's has some tasty recommendations on where locals like to dine in Vegas. And Border Grill seems to come up quite often.

—And finally Halal Guys, which is opening soon in Koreatown, will likely open by mid-summer in Vegas. In case you need yet another option for late night dining.

Restaurant pick of the week: SW Veranda

SW Veranda

SW Veranda

Need something a little more casual with the swagger of a luxury resort? Head to SW Veranda, the outdoor terrace that sits above SW Steakhouse, looking down on the Lake of Dreams at Wynn Las Vegas.

David Walzog, the chef behind SW Steakhouse and neighboring restaurant Lakeside, provides the small plates and appetizers. Look for dishes meant to share such as Wagyu carpaccio with black truffle dressing, arugula and shaved parmesan; SW lobster rolls on warm brioche; yellowfin tuna tartar with pickled Japanese vegetables, soy and Gochujang; oysters on ice; chilled shrimp cocktail and a seafood spectacular featuring Maine lobster, King crab legs, shrimp, oysters and crab.

The SW Veranda opens nightly at 5:30 p.m., weather providing. No reservations are needed or accepted, though business casual attire is requested.  —Susan Stapleton

June 17, 2016

This week's news roundup

—Did you know that Las Vegas has a thriving Hawaiian barbecue scene? Here are nine places to get your sweet grilled meat and macaroni salad fix.

—Looking for more traditional barbecue options on your Sin City getaway? Luckily it's Barbecue Week here in Eater world, and Eater Vegas has your back with everything you ever needed to know about the city's smoked meat scene.

—You're probably looking to overly imbibe on your weekend getaway. With everything from ritzy cocktail lounges to your new favorite dive, here is an updated list of everywhere you should be drinking.

—Talk about drama. Lao Sze Chuan restaurateur and chef Tony Hu pled guilty to multiple charges that include wire fraud and not reporting $9.8 million in taxable revenue just last month. As Hu will likely face a sentence of around four years in prison, it is no surprise that the restaurant has gone kaput, with a new concept, China House, taking its place in the Palms.

Restaurant pick of the week: Hobak Korean BBQ

[Photo: Susan Stapleton]

Want to take a trip off the Strip to try the best Korean barbecue in town? Head to the new Hobak Korean BBQ in Las Vegas's Chinatown for food grilled right at the table by your server. Pick out dishes such as skirt steak for $25.99 and short ribs for $27.99, or order the "Hobak Beef" combo for two for $54.99 with its Angus brisket, Angus boneless shorts ribs or rib eye, marinated skirt steak or short ribs, bean paste stew, steamed egg, vegetables, cheddar cheese and the big hit with customers, popcorn ice cream. The look here is even cool with its industrial interior filled with posters, props and artwork from the '80s and '90s while the kitchen areas are hidden behind mock awning-shaded store fronts. 5808 Spring Mountain Road, Ste 101 —Susan Stapleton

June 10, 2016

—LA's beloved Eggslut has officially opened in Vegas. Check out the menu with favorites from the Grand Central Market location and exclusive bites just for The Cosmopoliton outlet here.

—It's hot out in the dessert. Cool down with Sin City's best ice cream shops.

—The Riviera is officially going down, with its destruction scheduled for the early morning of Tuesday, June 14. Watch the building implode from The Barrymore, which will be hosting a viewing party with $2 beers, $5 cocktails and glasses of wine, and special pricing on dishes including beef sliders, roast bone marrow and oysters Rockefeller.

—Looking for an off-strip recommendation from a Vegas chef? Border Grill's Jamaal Taherzadeh offers up Due Forni, Herbs & Rye, and Khoury's Mediterranean as great options.

Restaurant pick of the week: Eggslut

[Photo: Amelinda B Lee]

Chef Alvin Cailan expands his Eggslut empire from Los Angeles to Las Vegas with the opening of is newest location at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Yes, that means the menu of egg-centric sandwiches such as the Slut with its creamy coddled egg on top of pureed potatoes, and soon, once the dust settles, some very Vegas dishes. Different in Sin City? Later hours, or earlier, depending on how you look at it. Every Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday, the tiny restaurant opens at midnight to satisfy late-night cravings for the crowds at Marquee Nightclub at the resort. Cailan also promises shorter lines than found at his Grand Central Market location. Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, 3708 Las Vegas Blvd. S. —Susan Stapleton


, , NV 89109 (702) 698-2344 Visit Website

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