Best Friend reopened on March 19 at Park MGM. Roy Choi’s bodega-inspired Korean barbecue hot spot is operating on weekends only, Friday through Sunday from 5 until 11 p.m.
Bella Vita celebrated the grand opening of its second location on Blue Diamond Road last week with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a donation to Central Christian Church and the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation. The Italian restaurant that began with a location at the District at Green Valley Ranch and is already planning a third restaurant in Summerlin is open daily from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m.
The 81/82 Group, which opened its first stand-alone restaurant concept with Mas Por Favor in January 2020, is set to open La Neta Cocina y Lounge in the early part of the summer at an expanded Downtown Summerlin site formerly occupied partially by Blue Ribbon Fried Chicken. Chef Israel Castro will create his take on modern Mexican cuisine including dishes such as cochinita pibil, the Taquero Mucho taco platter, chicken rellenos with roasted acorn squash and more. The sprawling space will offer stained glass murals and a natural feel in the main dining room, including a living tree centerpiece, and a lounge outfitted with lush greenery. For more information, visit lanetacocina.com.
Las Vegas resident DJ Pauly D, aka Paul DelVecchio from MTV’s Jersey Shore franchise of shows, is the latest star to launch a delivery-only virtual restaurant serving food in Las Vegas, among other cities. He’s joined forces with Virtual Dining Concepts and Grubhub to create Pauly D’s Italian Subs with a menu of made-to-order sandwiches including turkey pesto, the club, Genoa salami, pork and peppers, spicy capicola and more. Delivery is now available at Grubhub.com.
Bar Rescue star and Las Vegas resident Jon Taffer has completed a deal to bring his Taffer’s Tavern concept, which opened its first bar and restaurant in Atlanta in the fall, to Las Vegas with several locations. Expect to see more on this development soon as the franchise is looking for prominent spots around the valley including at casino resorts on or off the Strip.
Portland’s Killer Burger also is plotting an expansion into Las Vegas. The “rock ‘n roll burger hangout” is franchising throughout the Pacific Northwest and currently seeking partners to bring the brand to the desert at killerburgerfranchising.com.
For the first time since July, the High Roller Observation Wheel at the Linq Promenade on the Strip will reintroduce its popular Happy Half Hour experience on March 29. It includes an open bar and bartender in the wheel’s cabins for one full 30-minute rotation, pairing your favorite cocktails with sensational Strip views. Tickets are $60 per person and are available from 4 p.m. until midnight Monday through Thursday and from noon until midnight Friday through Sunday. All guests must be 21 or older.
Former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman will host the next edition of his dinner series at Oscar’s Steakhouse at the Plaza on April 7 where he will recall his personal experiences filming the movie Casino, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in December. The menu will re-create the meal that his wife, current Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman, cooked and served for the cast and crew at their home during the production. Due to capacity restrictions, adjusted ticket prices are $300 for two people, $600 for four or $900 for six. Find more information at plazahotelcasino.com.
In case you missed it, the Meow Wolf Omega Mart immersive art experience at Area15 also includes Datamosh, a full bar hidden inside the space serving eight specialty cocktails. It’s only accessible to Omega Mart guests and the unique crafted libations include the Source, with El Silencio Mezcal, Lillet Blanc, shiso, tarragon and lime, and the Happle, with Yobo soju, aloe liqueur, unfiltered apple juice, rice milk, apple Schnapps and apple blossom bitters. That one has a buzz button, too. Datamosh is open Monday through Thursday from 3 to 10 p.m., Friday from 3 p.m. until midnight, Saturday from 10 a.m. until midnight and Sunday from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. Tickets to Omega Mart are available at omegamart.com.
MTO Café, which has restaurant locations Downtown near City Hall and at Downtown Summerlin, has been sold to the ownership group behind Babystacks Café, which has expanded in recent years to include six restaurants all across the valley. The MTO spots will continue to operate under the MTO banner.