A&E

Las Vegas’ best new restaurants of 2018

Image
Shiraz
Photo: Wade Vandervort

BAVETTE’S Best Friend, NoMad and Eataly are sure to get most of the attention in 2019, but this year was all about Park MGM’s sexy steakhouse, transplanted from Chicago with style, sophistication and classic cuisine. Park MGM, 702-730-6700. –Brock Radke

B.B.D.’S This mecca of meat, metal and malted beverages might seem out of place at Palace Station, but the griddled burgers are on point. Don’t overlook arguably the Valley’s best cheesesteaks while basking in the wonderfully aggressive beer list. Palace Station, 702-221-6513. –Jim Begley

BLOCK 16 FOOD HALL It’s too good to be true: institutions like Hattie B’s hot chicken, Pok Pok’s wings, Lardo’s sandwiches and Ghost Donkey’s drinks and nachos and more, all in one concentrated space. Cosmopolitan, 702-698-7000. –BR

CATCH The moment you step inside this wonderland, you’ll want to be camera-ready. Catch’s alluring truffle sashimi is one of the year’s best bites, but tantalizing options abound—from seared Wagyu to salmon carpaccio—inside this opulent new favorite. Aria, 702-590-5757. –Leslie Ventura

CHINA TANG Opened with little fanfare in February, this regal, glamorous new Chinese restaurant brings precise flavor and all the right vibes. MGM Grand, 702-891-7380. –BR

CLEAVER You know from Herbs & Rye that Nectaly Mendoza serves a stiff drink and a solid ribeye. His new steakhouse is noteworthy for similar reasons, plus an equally impressive happy hour (hello, steak tartare). 3900 Paradise Road #D1, 702-538-9888. –LV

D.E. THAI This postage stamp-sized eatery in the Arts District delivers authentic cuisine with some surprises. Chicken curry puffs are a treat not commonly found on local menus, while pad ga prow crab meat rife with Thai basil excels. 1108 S. Third St. 702-979-9121. –JB

EDO GASTRO TAPAS & WINE Spanish tapas with Asian influences, a gin and tonic cart and eclectic Spanish wines? Yes, please. Don’t overlook the Bikini, a miniature griddled sausage and cheese “panini” that might be the single-most-addictive dish of 2018. 3400 S. Jones Blvd. #11A, 702-641-1345. –JB

ESTHER’S KITCHEN Chef James Trees’ enthusiastically hip Italian restaurant is exactly what Downtown needed to elevate its food game. Breads and pastas are made in-house, sandwiches are gargantuan and produce is seasonal. What’s not to love? 1130 S. Casino Center Blvd. #110, 702-570-7864. –LV

MORDEO BOUTIQUE WINE BAR This amalgam of Japanese and Spanish cuisine from local restaurateur Khai Vu has been touted as a wine bar, but it’s so much more. It’s equally contemporary and comfortable; make it your regular stop for irresistible uni bites and sharp ocean trout tiradito. 5420 Spring Mountain Road #108, 702-545-0771. –JB

NOMAD RESTAURANT The double-story Victorian library-dining room is awe-inspiring. The inexplicably moist roast chicken, comingled with foie gras and black truffle, could be even better than advertised, and the Soup Aux Truffe Bocuse is just as memorable. NoMad is an instant classic. Park MGM, 702-730-6785. –JB

ONCE This was a big year for new restaurants on the Las Vegas Strip, and no dining destination offered more creative flavors and a more distinct point of view than chef Ricardo Zarate’s Peruvian Nikkei stronghold. Palazzo, 702-607-3797. –BR

PAID IN FULL When a pair of classically trained chefs deliver an outstanding, unique riff on Asian street food, you must take notice. 7225 S. Durango Drive #105, 725-605-4402. –JB

RED PLATE Executive chef Yip Cheung previously headed the high roller-exclusive Talon Club, and now he’s bringing gourmet Chinese food to the masses. Don’t miss the exquisite caviar taro puff with quail egg. Cosmopolitan, 702-698-7000. –LV

SCOTCH 80 PRIME There’s a new place to see and be seen, and it just so happens to be in the same space as an old favorite at the Palms. The menu and service combine for nothing short of a steakhouse revolution. Palms, 702-942-7777. –BR

SHIRAZ Executive Chef Jainine Jaffer brings Persian, Indian and Pakistani dishes together under one big, beautiful roof. Jaffer is a master at mixing and borrowing from other cuisines, so you’re sure to find something you haven’t tried, and it’s going to be good. 2575 S. Decatur Blvd., 702-870-0860. –LV

THE STOVE Sometimes, two heads are better than one. In this case, it’s Antonio Nunez, formerly of Kitchen Table, and Scott Commings of Freedom Beat who’ve joined forces to create a singular Henderson brunch destination. Four words: chicken fried foie gras. 11261 Eastern Ave. #200, 702-625-5216. –LV

Tags: Dining, Food
Share
Photo of Jim Begley

Jim Begley

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

Get more Jim Begley
Photo of Brock Radke

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

Get more Brock Radke
Photo of Leslie Ventura

Leslie Ventura is a staff writer at Las Vegas Weekly and Industry Weekly. She’s picked the brains of rock stars ...

Get more Leslie Ventura
  • “I’m always thinking—and encouraging my teams to do so as well—about what’s next. Distinguished dining, stellar service, excellent wine and whiskey—these things will never go ...

  • There’s some local flair, too. The mural on the outside of the restaurant—layered with sugar skulls, flora and fauna—is the creation of Vegas-based art collective ...

  • Head brewer Eddie Leal, a Gordon Biersch and Steelhead Brewery alum with an infectious laugh, has been overhauling his menu to accompany the casino’s heralded ...

  • Get More Dining Stories
Top of Story