The best new restaurants of 2015

15 fresh spots where we’ll still be dining long after the year is over

The lovely cuisine of Lago at Bellagio.
Photo: Mikayla Whitmore

ANDIRON STEAK & SEA Andiron’s excellence comes as no surprise, as Elizabeth Blau and Kim Canteenwalla have clearly mastered the neighborhood restaurant in various iterations. But how do they keep exceeding our expectations? This time, it was with sharp design and an undeniably warm approach to surf and turf. Downtown Summerlin, 702-685-8002. –BR

ARTISANAL FOODS CAFE The year’s best new restaurant might be the toughest to find. At Artisanal, tucked away inside a retail storefront in an industrial park south of McCarran, former MTO Café chef Johnny Church skillfully showcases the distributor’s high-end ingredients at affordable prices. 2053 Pama Lane, 702-436-4252. –JB

Bardot Brasserie tastes like precision.

BARDOT BRASSERIE It’s hard to believe Las Vegas will see a better new restaurant this year, I wrote in February. I was right. Michael Mina’s take on the beloved classics of French cuisine is memorable, even thrilling, especially if you have a bit too much rosé with brunch. From king crab crepes to mussels mariniéres to foie gras parfaits, this is delicious precision. Aria, 877-230-2742. –BR

CARBONE Another new Aria eatery serving favorite Euro-dishes in swanky, glam, old-school environs? We struck the motherlode this year. Carbone’s ability to hit the New York-style Italian-American sweet spot knows no limitations; the experience feels as big as the plate-sized veal parm. Aria, 877-230-2742. –BR

CHADA STREET The sequel to Chada Thai & Wine is closer to the Strip, more spacious and maybe a bit spicier. The great wine to go with the great food is still the core, but this cuisine digs deeper into its inspiration, paying tribute to Thailand’s infamous street-food scene. Prepare for excitement. 3839 Spring Mountain Road, 702-579-0207. –BR

Chada Street can be found in the heart of Chinatown.

FLOCK & FOWL The uptick in the Valley’s interest in Hainan chicken can be traced directly to Sheridan Su’s Flock & Fowl. Not content with basking in the success of Fat Choy inside the Eureka casino, the chef opened a venue centered on a single, not-so-common Asian dish. Its success restores my faith in humanity. 380 W. Sahara Ave., 626-616-6632. –JB

GLUTTON One can argue over whether Glutton’s signage—a man bursting out of an undersized shirt—is appealing, but there’s no arguing about the cuisine. With a menu ranging from spicy pork rinds and one of the Valley’s best burgers to wood-roasted shrimp scampi and orecchiette with housemade pheasant sausage, there’s something for everyone at Glutton. 616 E. Carson Ave. #110, 702-366-0623. –JB

Inyo Asian Variety lives up to its name, in delicious style.

INYO ASIAN VARIETY Normally, a schizophrenic menu is a precursor to a disappointing dining experience, but Inyo chef Gregg Fortunato succeeds at melding many parts of the Far East into a single menu, a culinary journey from China to Thailand to Japan and places in between. 6000 W. Spring Mountain Road #1B, 702-248-0588. –JB

JABURRITOS Sometimes fusion can baffle, muddling all flavors involved. But other times, it’s simply magic, like peanut butter and chocolate—or, now, sushi and burritos. Soho Japanese Restaurant chef John Chien Lee has brought them together in holy matrimony at Jaburritos. It’s fusion at its finest. 2600 W. Sahara Ave. #115, 702-778-2525. –JB

JAPAÑEIRO There were plenty of Strip chefs moving out to the ’burbs this year, and Nobu Caesars alum Kevin Chong was a prime example. Pristine platings and high-end sourcing combine for a refined Japanese experience in an unassuming location. If this is the new normal for local dining, it’s a very good thing. 7315 W. Warm Springs Road #170, 702-260-8668. –JB

Enjoy the art of oysters at Other Mama.

LAGO What if our very own master of Spanish tapas (Julian Serrano) created a small-plate Italian concept, with a multitude of memorable bites you could consume in a sparkling space while also taking in Bellagio’s iconic water show? Would it be perfect? Seems like yes. Bellagio, 702-693-71111. –BR

OTHER MAMA There were big, famous restaurant openings this year that fulfilled on their promise, but was there a hotter, more buzzed-about new restaurant than the humble, no-nonsense, impeccably fresh Other Mama? Chef Dan Krohmer creates some of the Valley’s most craveable cuisine in a truly comfy spot, and that combo’s tough to beat. 3655 S. Durango Drive #6, 702-463-8382. –BR

SHAKE SHACK Yes, Shake Shack’s a chain. But it’s an elite chain, on par with our own In-N-Out (and arguably even better). You get quality burgers, crinkle-cut fries and concretes, and they also serve beer. Well played, Shake Shack. New York-New York, 702-222-6730; Downtown Summerlin, 702-964-1025. –JB

YUI EDOMAE SUSHI If you love Kabuto, you’ll also be enamored with Yui. Owned by former Kabuto frontman Genichi “Gen-san” Mizoguchi, the brand-new restaurant is a virtual doppelganger of the esteemed edomae (Tokyo-style) sushi joint just down Spring Mountain. Our cup runneth over. 3640 Arville St., 702-202-2408. –JB

ZYDECO PO-BOYS This little gumbo shack from southwest Lousiana’s Brandon Trahan was probably the most overlooked Downtown opening of the year, but not by those who appreciate soul-satisfying Cajun cuisine—tough to find in the desert. If you haven’t destroyed Zydeco’s debris po-boy, you’re missing out on one of the city’s best sandwiches. 616 E. Carson Ave. #140, 702-982-1889. –BR

Tags: Dining, Food
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Jim Begley

Jim Begley is an avid food lover who began writing about his Las Vegas dining adventures to defray his obscene ...

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Brock is an award-winning writer who has been documenting life in Las Vegas for 20 years. He currently leads entertainment ...

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