Las Vegas Restaurant News & Culinary Events
After nearly three years of planning, San Francisco-based chef Charles Phan's The Slanted Door is now open at Forum Shops at Caesars. Situated on the mall’s bottom level, the space features a black and white color scheme with white marble tabletops and a lattice ceiling; black leather chairs; an open 40-foot kitchen; and oak floors. The menu ranges from spring rolls with shrimp, pork, mint, shallot mayonnaise and peanut sauce (and a vegan version with tofu, shiitake, cabbage, mint and peanut sauce) to cellophane noodles with green onion, crab and sesame; and shaking beef with filet mignon, watercress, red onion and lime sauce. The beverage program reflects Phan’s love of whiskey, and includes the Whiskey Cocktail with Buffalo Trace bourbon, Angostura and orange bitters and gomme syrup. The kitchen is headed by Lanny Chin, who recently oversaw Clique Hospitality Group’s venues at Palms. The Slanted Door, Caesars Palace, Forum Shops at Caesars, 3500 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Ste. R30A, Las Vegas, NV 89109, 725-210-7010.
Within days of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino closing for its transition into Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, which included the shuttering of the restaurant Nobu, the globally established brand founded by Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper reopened as Nobu Las Vegas at Bally’s in the space of the recently closed SEA: The Thai Experience. Executive chef Nolan Kline, executive sushi chef Yasushi Handa and general manager Kenny Hernandez remain at the helm of the new 100-seat venue which features the full Nobu menu, including a selection of crafted cocktails, wine and saké. Nobu Las Vegas at Bally’s joins its flagship Nobu Hotel Caesars Palace and Nobu Restaurant Caesars Palace located across the street. Nobu Las Vegas at Bally's, Bally's Las Vegas, 3645 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-693-5090.
Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill in Downtown Summerlin closed on January 13 and after a two-week remodel reopened as Wolfgang Puck Players Locker, a family-friendly restaurant offering elevated sports fare celebrating Las Vegas’ local NHL hockey team, the Vegas Golden Knights. The new décor features a floor-to-ceiling display of more than 100 custom glass lockers, of which Puck and Golden Knights players Alex Tuch, William Karlsson, Deryk Engelland, Reilly Smith and Shea Theodore have their own dedicated locker showcasing their favorite high-end spirits (fans can also rent their own). There are also two outdoor patios, one of which is pet-friendly. The food menu still lists some Puck classics, such as truffle potato chips, hummus vegetable crudité and salmon en papillote with roasted tomatoes and fennel. New dishes, named for the five hockey stars, include Engelland’s Fish & Chips, Tuch’s Reuben Sandwich, Karlsson’s Vegan Burger, Reilly’s Cheese Curds and Shea’s Gooey Deluxe (salted caramel chocolate chip cookie). Wolfgang Puck Players Locker, Downtown Summerlin, 10955 Oval Park Dr., Ste. D3, Las Vegas, NV 89135, 702-202-6300.
Circa Resort & Casino, currently under construction on Fremont Street and expected to open in December 2020, has unveiled its selection of restaurants. Included will be Barry’s Downtown Prime, a steakhouse showcasing vintage glamour evoking a throwback vibe of the 50s and 60s from chef Barry S. Dakake, who was at the helm of N9NE Steakhouse and Scotch 80 Prime for nearly two decades; and 8 East, chef Dan Coughlin’s creative take on pan-Asian cuisine spanning Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Korean and Thai dishes. Additional venues will be Project BBQ by chef Rex Bernales, a permanent food truck and Carolina barbecue joint situated on the Fremont Street Experience; Saginaw’s Delicatessen, a family-style deli by Detroit restaurateur Paul Saginaw and his first restaurant outside of Michigan; and Victory Burger & Wings Co. from Chris Sotiropoulos and Grace Keros, third-generation owners of Detroit’s 102-year-old American Coney Island, which will be the first new concept from the brand’s founding family in more than a century. Circa Resort & Casino, 18 Fremont St., Las Vegas, NV 89101, no phone.
Wynn Las Vegas will welcome a social dining, contemporary Mexican restaurant concept, Elio, in partnership with Enrique Olvera, Daniela Soto-Innes and Santiago Perez of ATM Group, the international hospitality company behind acclaimed restaurants Cosme and Atla in NYC and Pujol in Mexico City. Set to debut on March 25, 2020, the restaurant will occupy the former space of Andrea’s adjacent to Encore Beach Club. Décor will feature modern and minimal architectural lines paired with rich textures and beautiful art inspired by the 40s and 50s, a golden age for the Mexican cinema. The menu will showcase small plates and appetizers with a heavy emphasis on seafood and produce paired with signature shareable entrées. The bar and lounge will boast an assortment of hand-selected agave-based spirits from Mexico and will be open daily and serve weekend brunch. The dining room will be open nightly. Elio, Wynn Las Vegas, 3131 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, no phone.
Din Tai Fung, the Taiwanese dumpling and noodle house with more than 170 restaurants in 13 countries, will debut in the former ARIA Café space at Aria Resort & Casino in mid-to-late 2020. The restaurant is renowned for its meticulously handcrafted dumplings and noodles served in an approachable setting and specializes in xiao long bao Shanghai-style soup dumplings, which are filled with high quality Kurobuta pork and broth fragranced with aromas of fresh ginger and green onion. Additional details on Din Tai Fung will be made available in the coming months. Din Tai Fung, Aria Resort & Casino, CityCenter, 3730 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, no phone.
The inaugural EVOLUTION Las Vegas Food & Wine Experience will replace the decades-old UNLVino. It will be held from 7 p.m.-11 p.m. at the new Caesars Forum Conference Center located adjacent to the High Roller Observation Wheel and The LINQ Promenade. Like the UNLVino Grand Tasting in recent years, there will be interactive experiences; cooking demonstrations; tastes from more than 50 local chefs and restaurants; wine, beer and cocktail tastings; live music; and the presentation of the Dom Pérignon Award of Excellence, which this year will honor chef Bobby Flay. A portion of the proceeds will fund scholarships for students of the UNLV William F. Harrah College of Hospitality. Tickets are $150 and can be purchased here. Attendees must be 21 or older. EVOLUTION, Caesars Forum Conference Center, 3911 S. Koval Ln., Las Vegas, NV 89109, no phone.
Las Vegas Epicurean Affair will be held at the Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa pools from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. (VIP admission at 6 p.m.). The event, sponsored by the Nevada Restaurant Association, will feature samples from dozens of Las Vegas’ finest restaurants and cocktails from some of the most prestigious beverage purveyors. Proceeds from the event benefit NVRA’s educational and scholarship programs. Early bird pricing through March 31 is $70 for general admission and $85 for VIP (with admission at 6 p.m.). Prices will increase by $40 beginning April 1. Visit here for more information and to purchase tickets. Las Vegas Epicurean Affair, Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa, 11011 W. Charleston Blvd., Las Vegas, NV 89135, 866-767-7773, 702-797-7777.
The NoMad Restaurant at Park MGM is offering two three-course theater menus, available on concert and sporting event days at Park Theater and T-Mobile Arena. The menu priced at $65 includes courses of Brussels sprout “wedge” with smoked bacon, Gorgonzola cheese and creamy miso dressing; burrata caprese with marinated heirloom tomatoes; and a choice of wild salmon slow-baked with brioche and horseradish crust or filet mignon with crispy breadcrumb and bone marrow crust. The $95 menu includes a choice of Brussels sprout “wedge,” gnocchi cacio e pepe or pan-fried Chesapeake blue crab cakes; scallops pan-seared with tomatillos and poblano peppers or a 16-oz. 45-day dry-aged NY strip steak; and honey-oat shortbread with brittle and ice cream or malted milk ganache with chocolate fondant and malt ice cream. The NoMad Restaurant, NoMad Las Vegas, 3770 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-730-6785.
Sushi Roku Introduces CBD-Infused “The Green Fairy” Cocktail
Innovative Dining Group, which includes Sushi Roku at Forum Shops at Caesars, has debuted its first CBD cocktail. Named “The Green Fairy,” the legendary nickname of absinthe, the drink contains 1 ml of CBD oil, absinthe, bourbon, rhubarb syrup, lemon juice, lime and mint, and is flambéed before being served. In addition, any cocktail on the menu can be infused with the CBD oil for an additional $5. CBD, which is short for cannabidiol, is hemp derived and known for a variety of therapeutic benefits including a subtle, relaxing effect on the body, similar to meditating, and does not contain THC or have psychoactive effects. “The Green Fairy” cocktail is now available at Innovative Dining Group Sushi Roku locations in Las Vegas and Scottsdale and at Katana in Chicago, but not in California, where the use of CBD in restaurants is not permitted. Sushi Roku, Caesars Palace, Forum Shops at Caesars, 3500 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-733-7373.
Mabel’s BBQ Spices Up Menu with Tacos, Tamales & House-made Tortillas
Mabel’s BBQ at Palms is now serving tacos and tamales using house-made tortillas. The tacos, priced at $4 each, include traditional options of pork shoulder, smoked chicken and beef brisket; vegetarian with smoked mushrooms, avocado and cilantro; and the ‘Merican: a take on the Americanized style taco in a classic hard shell with ground beef, pico de gallo and jack cheese. Priced at $3 each are homemade masa and steamed cornhusk tamales with a BBQ twist on the traditional Mexican staple. The KC BBQ brisket tamale features Kansas City BBQ brisket, mustard, tomato and paprika; the pork shoulder has salsa roja, green onion, cumin and chipotle; and the vegetarian cheese and jalapeño option comes with Monterey Jack cheese, smoked poblano pepper and cilantro. In addition, Mabel’s BBQ has introduced a classic, fresh-made guacamole with house-made chips. Mabel’s BBQ, Palms Casino Resort, 4321 W. Flamingo Rd., Las Vegas, NV 89103, 702-944-5931.
Gordon Ramsay Burger Introduces New Breakfast Menu
Gordon Ramsay Burger at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino is now serving a new breakfast menu and is the first Gordon Ramsay restaurant in Las Vegas to do so. Offered daily from 8 a.m.-10:15 a.m., the menu highlights a Brunch burger with a beef patty, over-medium egg, American cheese, grilled onions and pork bacon; Las Vegan sandwich featuring a plant-based sausage patty, tofu scramble, arugula and roasted tomato on a vegan bun; El Loco sandwich with soft-scrambled eggs, short rib, tater tots, pickled shallots, white cheddar and salsa in a spinach tortilla; and bread pudding french toast sticks, toffee sauce and house jam. In addition, smoothies include the Tropical Greens blended with mango, pineapple, kale and cucumber; and Rise and Shine with strawberries, bananas and Greek yogurt. Gordon Ramsay Burger, Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, 3667 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-785-5555.
Pre-Theater Menu Offered at The Mayfair Supper Club
The Mayfair Supper Club, overlooking The Fountains of Bellagio, is now offering a three-course pre-theater menu. Available daily from 5 p.m.-6 p.m. and priced at $68 per person (plus tax and tip), the tasting menu includes a choice of Caesar salad, oysters Rockefeller, shrimp cocktail, heirloom tomato, truffle fettuccini (supplement) or chilled king crab (supplement); chicken persillade, king salmon, filet mignon, vegetable pot pie, prime rib (supplement) or lobster Thermidor (supplement); and cherries jubilee or opera cake. For reservations call 702-693-8876. The Mayfair Supper Club, Bellagio, 3600 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-693-8876.
Gordon Ramsay Steak Offering Three-Course Truffle Prix-Fixe Through October 27
Through October 27, Gordon Ramsay Steak at Paris Las Vegas is offering a three-course truffle prix-fixe menu for $195. The meal includes an amuse-bouche of Scotch egg with Berkshire pork sausage, pickled celery root and truffle emulsion; American Wagyu carpaccio with puffed rice paper and truffle salsa; wild mushroom and diver scallop risotto with haricot vert and mushroom crisp; American Wagyu eye and butter-poached lobster tail with glazed petit vegetables and potato purée; and vanilla mascarpone cheesecake with vanilla macerated cherries, honey graham streusel, lemon gelée and micro basil. Guests can add a wine pairing for an additional $75. Gordon Ramsay Steak, Paris Las Vegas, 3655 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-946-4663; 702-946-7000.
Robert Garcia has been appointed executive chef of The Barrymore. The native Las Vegan was formerly executive chef of Honey Salt, a restaurant that focuses on farm-to-table cuisine. He joined Gen3 Hospitality (the restaurant management company that oversees The Barrymore) in 2019. Chef Garcia specializes in modernizing simple dishes that are complex in flavor and technique, and he aims to bring his unique style, combining classical French techniques with Latin American influences and using only sustainably farmed ingredients. The Barrymore, Royal Resort, 99 Convention Center Dr., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-407-5303.
Sarah Thompson has been named executive chef of Elio, the contemporary Mexican restaurant and lounge from ATM Group and Enrique Olvera, Santiago Perez and Daniela Soto-Innes debuting at Encore at Wynn Las Vegas on March 25. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America-Hyde Park in 2010, Thompson worked in NYC restaurants including Marea and Wylie Dufresne’s Alder, and with Andrew Carmellini’s NoHo Hospitality Group. In 2015, shortly after the restaurant’s opening, Thompson joined the team at Cosme, where she worked with Olvera, Perez and Soto-Innes and eventually became executive sous chef and created a menu rooted in authentic Mexican flavors. Her new menu at Elio will include dishes such as tuna tataki rubbed in adobo with a smoked soy; whole red snapper with crispy scales and salsa crudo; and green mole with pepitas, nuts and herbs. Elio, Encore Las Vegas, 3131 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, No phone.
Mandalay Bay’s Red Square, a fixture at the resort since opening in 1999, closed on November 17, 2019. One of Mandalay Bay’s original restaurants, the Russian-themed vodka bar and restaurant was known for its house-infused vodkas, iced bar top and freezing vodka vault in which patrons donned fur hats and coats as they consumed the spirits. At one time, Red Square boasted the largest vodka collection in the world. Another attraction was the headless statue of Vladimir Lenin situated at the restaurant’s entrance; the head was originally attached to the body but was lopped off after the resort was criticized for glorifying the Soviet leader. It has not yet been announced what Red Square will be replaced with. Red Square, Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, 3950 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89119, no phone.
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