It’s been raising eyebrows in Las Vegas for 18 years, but Pink Taco, the Hard Rock Hotel’s Mexican restaurant, is just as satisfying as its name is outrageous.
Pink Taco’s new brunch menu, created by chef Crystal Parker (formerly chef de cuisine at Flour & Barley in San Diego), serves up the best of two distinct worlds: sweet and savory. You can’t pass up the churro waffles, tossed in cinnamon and sugar and drizzled with brown butter cajeta, or the ridiculous tres leches pancakes, a warm and fluffy stack served with a scoop of fried ice cream, a sprinkling of powdered sugar and condensed milk syrup.
Switching gears, the crispy chicken tamale with roasted tomatillo salsa isn’t your ordinary tamale. The crunchy masa exterior gives way to an enticing textural experience, and the moist and tender meat on the inside will keep your fork coming back for more. Topped with a fried egg and queso fresco, this dish is savory and smoky—just the right plate to offset the sweetness of those pancakes.
While soup might not scream “brunch,” you’ll be thankful you ordered the hangover green chile chicken stew. Pink Taco’s take on posole uses tender chunks of smoked chicken and earthy hominy, then adds both to a citrusy, salty and spicy broth. As promised, it’ll cure that nasty hangover, and get you primed for round two. Pink Taco at the Hard Rock Hotel, 702-693-5525; brunch Saturday & Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.