There is absolutely no reason to eat terrible food in Las Vegas. Considering the number of celebrity chefs that dominate the Strip and the fact that resorts have deep pockets to make their dining experiences stand out, a mediocre meal is easily avoidable.
There’s every variety of food you can imagine—sushi, burgers, Spanish, Italian, Mexican, whatever. From wild party spots to fine dining award winners, these are the restaurants you want to check out.
Bazaar Meat by Jose Andres2535 S Las Vegas Blvd
With Bazaar Meat, Jose Andres did for meat what Danny Meyers did for burgers with Shake Shack. His Bazaar, which you’ll always find at an SLS Hotel, is obviously one of the best restaurants in America–not surprising, considering Andres worked at elBulli for years (for non-foodies, elBulli was considered the best restaurant by many top food critics before it shut down in 2014). Expect a lively, bustling atmosphere and some signature molecular gastronomy-inspired plates like cotton candy foie gras and caviar flights. But you should really order up something with Kobe beef, one of Andres’ specialties. Bazaar is one of the few places on the strip that serves true Kobe beef. Also, since it’s Vegas, you’ll find a theatrical open-concept kitchen and alligator heads as décor, so there’s plenty to look at if you manage to tear your eyes from your plate.
Scarpetta3708 S Las Vegas Blvd
Scott Conant is the real deal. Drawing on his Italian heritage and enormous talent, he basically reinvented how chefs think about pasta. This James Beard Foundation Award winner has opened his signature restaurant, Scarpetta, in places like LA and NYC, but the Vegas location is possibly one of the most interesting. For one, it’s pretty hard to find in the Cosmopolitan (3rd floor, all the way in the back). In fact, you might not even think it’s a restaurant when you walk in: it has more of a swank cocktail bar look since the dining room is tucked away. But once you actually get there, you can rest assured you’ll have an elevated dining experience. Don’t stress the dress, though, because it’s also quite casual. You need to order the spaghetti. Do not not order the spaghetti. That’s like going to Pizza Hut and ordering a salad (in this analogy, Pizza Hut is an incredible fine dining experience). However, if you’re really not feeling the pasta, we can also recommend the spiced duck breast.
Joël Robuchon3799 S Las Vegas Blvd
Joël Robuchon is the type of restaurant that you save for last. Avoid the pranks because this place is straight-up fancy. Robuchon himself is one of the highest ranked chefs in the world. When you eat here, you’re going to eat well. One of seven Michelin three-star restaurants in America, Joël Robuchon is opulent, grand, refined. This is dinner will be so good, you’ll be tempted to steal the silverware. It’s that fancy. The restaurant sends you a private limo for a stylish arrival because it has the power to do that (yes, it’s complimentary, which is only fair considering the hundreds you’re about to spend). Expect French cuisine with a signature Asian touch. You’re going to eat what they tell you to eat because it’s a tasting menu curated the day of, but expect rare stuff like frog legs with red miso and truffled langoustine ravioli in foie gras sauce. This is going to be the fanciest dinner you’ve had in your life. Not to break hearts, but you’re going to pay around $450 per person (yes, per person: this is not a typo), so you don’t have a seizure when the bill comes.
Herringbone3730 S Las Vegas Blvd
Brian Malarkey knows what a guy wants from a meal, and his awesome restaurant Herringbone, located at the Aria, is where he’ll give it to you. First, it looks good. It’s stylish, cozy and spacious. Second, it has an outdoor patio, which isn’t common for a top Vegas restaurant. Third, there’s a live DJ every night who’s absolutely amazing. Trust us, we don’t throw that word around lightly (well, ok, we do, but the DJ really is amazing). Brunch is incredible here and every meal has small, shareable options, which are perfect for big groups. You can share essential eats like meatballs with family-recipe pork gravy, lobster mac ‘n cheese and even wings doused in garlic, chili, cilantro and peanut. Because Brian is known for his seafood, you might as well go for his Chilean sea bass, crab cakes, or one of the huge platters like Yacht ($155) which comes with 12 oysters, almost half a pound of Alaskan King Crab, 1-1/2 pounds of Maine lobster, and Jumbo Shrimp.
THE Steak House2880 S Las Vegas Blvd
We’re not sending you to Circus Circus because we love it there. We don’t. There are plenty of far better casino resorts in Vegas. But there’s a steak house here at which you need to eat. A steak house so good the locals go there, which says a lot. THE Steak House is destination dining at best, and there’s a reason for THE emphasis. It’s Zagat-awarded, locally loved, and has been a “Best of Las Vegas” restaurant for almost thirty years. You can tell it’s old school; they haven’t done anything with the decor since the 1980s. But that doesn’t matter. You’re going to eat a Mesquite-style porterhouse or rib eye, aged to perfection for three weeks in the restaurant’s own, glass-enclosed aging room, then sizzled up on their open-hearth mesquite charcoal broiler. Steaks come with veggies and garlic-mashed potatoes and are only $44 tops. For what you’re getting, it’s absolutely worth it.