Las Vegas is known for its casinos and shows, but did you know it also has a reputation as a foodie's dream come true? Forget the all-you-can-eat buffets that used to pepper the Strip. Some of the best restaurants in Vegas are headed by celebrity chefs like Guy Fieri and Jose Andres. True to its legendary reputation of indulgence, you can also satiate your appetite in Sin City.
A Michelin 3-star restaurant on the casino floor at the MGM Grand? It's true. Tucked away next to the Cirque du Soleil theatre, Joël Robuchon is a gourmet's dream. The menu constantly changes according to what's in season. However, a few of the late chef of the century's classic dishes are still on the menu, including Le Caviar—12 grams of osetra caviar on top of fresh crab in cucumber gelee adorned with dots of cauliflower puree. A 15-course tasting menu is available for $445 — this elegance doesn't come cheap.
If you stay on the Strip, you won't happen upon Primal Steakhouse, ranked by many as Vegas' top table. Ask Siri how to get to 3528 S Maryland Pkwy, and you'll find yourself in a paradise for meat eaters. Primal is the place in Vegas to get a 40-ounce Wagyu steak—but prepare for sticker shock. (Understandably, such ginormous steaks can be shared by several diners.) Whether you opt for a filet mignon, a dry-aged New York strip, or a Bison tomahawk, Primal has you covered. Tip: be sure to get the smoked Old Fashioned.
In the mood for some exquisite pasta? Try this popular family-run restaurant that has been serving classic Italian fare since 1985, along with a top-drawer wine list. It'll be tricky deciding between pasta dishes, classic Italian fare like risotto, veal piccata, or Osso Bucco, or getting adventurous with Coniglio brasato, braised rabbit served with soft polenta and roasted mushrooms. The restaurant is also paleo, vegetarian, and vegan-friendly. If you've got room, Ferraro's dessert menu includes panna cotta, tiramisu, gelato, Nutella crepes, and several cakes.
Vegas has a long-time tradition of steakhouses, and The Edge rivals Primal with its varieties of steaks. Also, it features fresh seafood, notably its oyster platter with a half dozen in-season crustaceans accompanied by mignonette and sustainable Kaluga caviar. Located in the tony Westgate Resort (formerly the Las Vegas Hilton), The Edge is not quite as expensive as Primal but has a less adventurous menu. Side dishes include grilled asparagus, mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts roasted with sweetie drop peppers, and crisp chicken skin accompanied by sauce mornay.
If you're in Vegas over the weekend, consider going to the New American restaurant Honey Salt for brunch. With bottomless mimosas and bloody Marys, you'll peruse a menu ranging from breakfast poutine to fried chicken Benedict. If the weather's nice (and it usually is), plan on dining on their curtained front patio. Honey Salt is also a good choice for lunch or dinner. Choose from any of their menus (including vegan, vegetarian, or gluten-free) and indulge in dishes like southern fried chicken, sandwiches like Reubens and BLTs, salads, and pizza. Share desserts like butterscotch bread pudding with your bae. Yum!
The first Chinese restaurant in North America to ever be awarded a Michelin star, Wing Lei is on the Strip inside the Wynn Las Vegas. Wing Lei serves dishes from Cantonese, Shanghai, and Szechuan traditions in an elegant gold and red setting. Chef Ming Yu's Imperial Peking duck is a favorite; the bird is carved tableside and can be served with either steamed buns or Mandarin crepes. Another must-try entree is his wok-fried Maine lobster. The chef also offers a tasting menu and seasonal signature dining experiences and thoughtfully includes a vegetarian menu, including the famous dish mapo tofu.
The nearby town of Henderson is home to 138, a craft chophouse where all the food is sourced from Nevada and California ranchers who practice sustainable agriculture. Chef Matt Meyer specializes in in-house dry aging of meats and poultry, creating juicy, tender, and savory results in every dish. Choose from lamb chops, duck breast, chicken, fish, and steak. Despite its carnivore-forward tilt, the menu also offers vegan options such as mushroom tamal with salsa verde and corn dashi. Fancy brunch at 138? They serve it.
The culinary laboratory and restaurant Vegas Test Kitchen is where area chefs test new concepts and recipes. That means there's something new to try on their weekly rotating menu. If you're into plant-based eats, Vegas Test Kitchen can meet your needs with vegan sushi, vegan pizzas, and a variety of Impossible burgers. Carnivores will also be pleased with the types of pizzas, pasta, and OMG-delicious pies, like bourbon pecan or blueberry crumble. Enjoy this casual spot with a full bar, and don't be surprised if your server also happens to be the chef!
If you're looking for the best and freshest fish cooked a la Mexicana, look no further than Mariscos el Frescos, just off the Strip. The neighborhood might look sketchy, but the food makes up for it. The owners work directly with local fishermen in Mexico to procure the highest quality fish. Order a whole grilled fish, cooked over an open fire and deboned when done, Mexican-style or go all-out with Camarones rancheros, shrimp pan-roasted with tomatoes, onions, and peppers in garlic butter and ranchera sauce. The restaurant offers fajitas, carne asada, and chicken if you're not into seafood.
Chef Patrick Munster and owner Kim Owens have created a spot serving reimagined American comfort food. Imaginative appetizers, like quinoa hush puppies and the short rib dumpling, are popular. Their smoked duck breast entree served with smoked blackberry barbecue sauce and golden beets is a favorite. The restaurant offers plant-based and gluten-free choices, salads, and steaks. Food is sustainably sourced, resulting in freshness and quality. Main St. Provisions offers a full bar with cocktails, beer, and wine. For dessert, choose from butter cake with pomegranate reduction, Cointreau whipped cream, lemon tart, and other choices. Sounds good enough to eat.