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kai-m

Your Top 10 in Las Vegas

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Inspired by a similar topic about Chicago in the Heartland-forum, I would like to know what the Vegas-regulars here would consider their Top10 (or top 5) in the city - fine dining & casual dining.

I think this could be a helpful topic since there are so many restaurants in LV that seem worth going to - personally I have lost track...

So, keep it coming...

regards

kai

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Top fine dining:

1. Joel Robuchon

2. Guy Savoy

3. Alex

4. Bar Charlie (part of Restaurant Charlie)

5. L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon

6. Picasso

7. Bartolotta

8. Okada

9. Michael Mina

10. Daniel Boulud

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1) Joel Robuchon

2) Guy Savoy

3) Alex

4) L'Atelier de J.R.

5) Picasso

6) Michael Mina

7) Tableau

8) Bradley Ogden

9) Bartolotta

10) Okada

I have not tried Charlie Trotter's yet, though I am sure he would get in the list. I will be dining there next month and will provide a report.

-Robert

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Lotus of Siam.

In 'n Out Burger

Memphis Championship BBQ

Okay, I don't get to Vegas that often, but these are the three that I always visit, no matter where else we go to eat.

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1) Bally's Sterling Brunch (Sunday only, sadly. Endless champagne and Maine lobster, and Key West shrimp, and sushi, and rack of lamb and truffle-stuffed ravioli, and... well, everything you could possibly want.)

2) Andre's (Monte Carlo - It's like dining in a drawing room at Versailles. The cigar & cognac lounge upstairs is a treasure.)

3) Bouchon (Venetian - This is my "go-to" restaurant if friends drop in unexpectedly.)

4) Spago (Caesar's Forum Shops - Chef Eric Klein has merged Alsace with California with wonderful results.)

5) Il Mulino (Caesar's Forum Shops - Order the entire dessert menu. Also order every appetizer. Oh, and the entrees are all great, too.)

6) Carluccio's Tivoli Garden (Tropicana Blvd., far from the strip.) Liberace designed the place. It's not fine dining, but it's fun Italian American cuisine at "family restaurant" prices. Go on a Wednesday night to see Wes play. Oh, and the place is haunted. And the mob used to hang out there.

7) Binion's Ranch Steakhouse (Old Las Vegas at it's best. Inexpensive USDA Prime beef here. Order a chicken fried lobster and a two-pound slab of prime rib for less than $100)

8) The In N' Out Burger on Tropicana. Best In N' Out in Vegas.

9) Emeril's Delmonico Steakhouse - Excellent steaks, wines and a great caesar salad, prepared tableside like it's supposed to be.

10) B&B Ristorante (Venetian - Mario never disappoints. I get the mint love letters every time.)

11) Settebello Pizzeria in Henderson. (Real Naples pizza in Vegas. Certified by the Naples Pizza Review Board. One of like 12 pizzerias in America that can make this claim. The gourmet food store next door sells real Iberian Jamon. )

12) Village Buffet at Paris for Breakfast. $1 mimosas and bloody marys if you know to ask for them, and crepes with nutella and bananas for breakfast.

13) International Market on Tropicana and Decatur. It's a grocery store. You have to be a member or they charge extra. But you can get every delicacy from just about every country on earth. If you want to buy Cornish pasties, sea urchin roe, and Thomy mustard, (and wash it down with some Shandy Bass) this is your place. Every ethnic grocery rolled up into a foodie's dream-store.

If it's got to be fine dining, you can scratch 6, 7, 8 and 11-13 off the list. But these are my favorites, in no particular order. (Except Bally's Brunch at the top of the list. You can easily eat $200 in food and drink $150 of Perrier Jouet for $75. Make sure you have a Bally's Player's Card before you reserve. You'll get a better table.)

I've only been here a few months, so Joel and Charlie are next on my list of places to try.

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I'm just going to make a list. It will be a mix of fine dining and casual. (but mostly fine) I won't make an attempt to put it in any real order.

L'Atelier de Joel Rubochon (MGM Grand)

Picasso (Bellagio)

Bouchon (Venetian)

N9NE (Palms)

Sensi (Bellagio)

Michael Mina (Bellagio)

Daniel Boulud (Wynn)

Lotus of Siam (not in a casino hotel)

Burger Bar (Mandalay Bay [mall between MB and Luxor, to be exact])

Austin's Steakhouse (Texas Station)

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Austin's Steakhouse (Texas Station)

Texas Station is miles from your other nine choices. Is Austin's that good? I haven't heard anything about the place. How would you rate the place against, say, Binion's?

Speaking of Station casinos, I missed one -- Main Street Station. They have what I consider to be the best microbrew in Las Vegas. (OK, "Best brew in LV" is like saying "Best Downhill Skiier in Libya." The pale ale certainly refreshes, and is a bargain at $4 per 22oz.

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Austin's Steakhouse (Texas Station)

Texas Station is miles from your other nine choices. Is Austin's that good? I haven't heard anything about the place. How would you rate the place against, say, Binion's?

Speaking of Station casinos, I missed one -- Main Street Station. They have what I consider to be the best microbrew in Las Vegas. (OK, "Best brew in LV" is like saying "Best Downhill Skiier in Libya." The pale ale certainly refreshes, and is a bargain at $4 per 22oz.

By miles, do you mean physical distance or do you mean not in the same league?

Yes, it's physically a long way from the Strip. I didn't pick the place, but went with a large group of people that just wanted to go someplace different and get away from the Strip just to get away from it.

But I thought it was really good. Pretty typical steakhouse decor. But lower prices than most of the places on the Strip. And really, my steak was very good. I put it on my list pretty much because I wanted to include something that WASN'T in one of the big strip casinos. I've never been to Binion's (the steakhouse), so can't say what it's like. But I'll say if you want a traditional steak place and you were thinking of getting away from the Strip, I would certainly recommend it.

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By miles, do you mean physical distance or do you mean not in the same league?

Physical distance. I'll have to give Austin's a try. It's near my aunt's house. I'll do a side-by-side to Binion's, which is currently my favorite "value-priced" steakhouse.

Binion's has it's faults (most of the side dishes are mediocre). But the steaks are excellent.

edit: quote glitch


Edited by ScoopKW (log)

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Since you are a local, I would certainly check it out. I've only been downtown once, so I am not totally sure what it's like for a local to drive and park there, but I know that getting to strip places can be a PITA with the traffic, and self parking can involve long hikes. Texas Station seemed pretty convenient to me if you are nearby. The only issue we had was getting OUT of the place on a Staruday night. No cab stand like at the strip places. We had to call and wait a while.

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Since you are a local, I would certainly check it out.  I've only been downtown once, so I am not totally sure what it's like for a local to drive and park there, but I know that getting to strip places can be a PITA with the traffic, and self parking can involve long hikes.  Texas Station seemed pretty convenient to me if you are nearby.  The only issue we had was getting OUT of the place on a Staruday night.  No cab stand like at the strip places.  We had to call and wait a while.

Since you seem to go to LV often, please do yourself a favor and check downtown out.

Scoop's Freemont St. Experience checklist:

1) Take the Deuce from the strip or drive and park at the Plaza (Plaza is the best bet because there are no tickets to validate. All-day/all-night free parking.)

2) Eat a $1 shrimp cocktail at Golden Gate (you have to sign up for their player's club or it's $2.) I go often enough to warrant spending 15 min. in line to get the card.

3) Walk 500 ft. down Main to Main St. Station and have one or two microbrews.

4) (optional) Time for another Shrimp Cocktail, right?

5) (If at Fremont near Lunch time) -- Plaza is the least expensive at $7.77 all day. If you can find a piece of rare salt-crusted roast beef, that alone is worth it. Plaza also offers decent fried chicken and a smattering of Chinese noodle dishes. I stick to the beef and chicken. The soft-serve ice cream at this buffet is better than most.

Main St. Station also has a good buffet, and has the added bonus of being close to their brewery. 2-for-1 buffet coupons for Main St. abound. You can find them nearly anywhere. (The tourist info booth at the Pioneer is helpful for discount coupons. Be sure to tip the coupon dude.)

6) There are $1 margaritas all day at the Fremont (it's the ghastly orange and purple casino in the middle.)

7) After dark, you have the world's largest TV (4 acres of lights) doing light shows that seem to focus entirely on fighter jets.

8) Binion's Ranch Steakhouse for dinner. Get a south-facing table. Don't expect much from the winelist except low prices. The list is populated with K-J and Mondavi budget wines. It's refreshing, though, to find a place where the most expensive glass of wine is nine bucks. You can't go wrong with any beef dish (all USDA prime). The two-pound chicken fried lobster is rightly famous.

Fremont has a partly-deserved reputation as being the redneck retreat of Las Vegas (because of the bargain-basement hotel room prices). But for me there's nothing like it. It has that "Shook Sinatra's Hand" vibe that the strip lacks. If you go on a good day, you'll have a great time. A bad day is when there's a convention of Larry the Cable Guy impersonators staying at Fitzgerald's and a convention of wheelchair-bound emphasemics at the Four Queens.

Best time to start your Fremont crawl is an hour or two before dusk. It takes about 4 hours (minus whatever gambling you want to do) to see Fremont properly.

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1. Guy savoy

2. Picasso

3. Joel Robuchon

4. Bouchon

5. Le cirque

6. Charlie Palmer's

7. The Verandah ( four seasons)

8. Michael Mina

9. Nobu

10. Spago

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