Lunch on the Las Vegas Strip. Seems like that phrase should open up some golden gates into a deliciously diverse paradise, no? There are certainly plenty of restaurants for a midday meal within the resorts along the Boulevard, but when asked for a recommendation on a Strip-lunch hot spot—the place to be—even the most experienced Vegas diner might struggle with an essential selection.
That won’t happen to me anymore. My power lunch plans are fully built out. RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay recently launched a three-course business lunch menu ($28) that is not to be missed, and this beautiful, refined fare paired with the regal environs of RM’s dining room easily adds up to the place I want to be.
Your first course is a choice of Rick Moonen’s famous New England clam chowder, a local farm salad, wok-seared edamame, grilled Pacific octopus or a Maryland blue crab cake. (The last two come with a $10 upcharge.) It’s tough to stray from the chowder or the impeccable crab cake, but my recommendation is the octopus, tender perfection with fingerling potatoes, cherry tomatoes and a Meyer lemon aioli.
The choices get even tougher at the entrée stage. You can’t lose with curry-spiced True North salmon over cauliflower mousse with crispy taro and lemon-olive oil emulsion, or the flat iron steak marinated in Korean flavors with shiitake mushroom fried rice. Or you could do a seared skate wing in brown butter caper sauce, or a Maine lobster roll in a butter-toasted bun with Old Bay chips. Wanna lux out? For $10 extra, kill it with lobster, clam, mussel, shrimp and king crab-laden cioppino fra diavolo. Tack on $15 and experience a daily whole fresh fish selection; That was my choice, and it was a simply grilled Mediterranean dorade royale that I wish I could eat every day, flaky and fantastically flavorful.
For the finishing touch, go for the Key lime pie, a rich and tangy classic. Or, there’s tiramisu, chocolate bread pudding, or a tasting of 16 different house-made ice creams ($10 extra). If there’s a better lunch deal that’ll make you feel this fancy and healthy at the same time, show me.
RM Seafood The Shoppes at Mandalay Place, 702-632-9300. Lunch: Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.