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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 restaurant spending. Follow Jim on Twitter: @splurgemonkey.

Story Archive

  • Taste

    Thursday, July 18, 2019

    Big Dog’s will also be releasing a quartet of fruited goses—a light, easy-drinking style of beer just right for a Vegas summer night.

  • Taste

    Thursday, June 13, 2019

    There isn’t a printed menu, and the website isn’t updated frequently, so consider it an effort in beer exploration.

  • A&E

    Thursday, May 23, 2019

    Gina Marinelli’s new spot brings a strong pesto game to the scene, beginning with the Italian—greens interspersed with dense mozzarella and salami cubes—and continuing with the pesto and truffle pizza and the bucatini Genovese, cylindrical pasta with dandelion greens pesto.

  • A&E

    Thursday, May 16, 2019

    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 karaoke scene.

  • Features

    Thursday, May 2, 2019

    From Other Mama’s oyster shooter to Sparrow + Wolf’s miso-rubbed porterhouse.

  • A&E

    Thursday, April 18, 2019

    It’s a singular experience, a deliberately paced meal well worth your time.

  • A&E

    Thursday, April 4, 2019

    The event moves into a new home, the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center, this weekend.

  • A&E

    Thursday, March 21, 2019

    Clevelander Michael Symon’s beef brisket is smoked so the fattiest bits melt in your mouth, in strong contrast to the charred skin. Equally noteworthy is the Cleveland-style chopped pork, mixed with jalapeño and sauerkraut.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019

    The mandilli di seta is a must-order, thin sheet pasta similar to lasagna, prepared in a sharp almond basil pesto.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019

    The menu collects Choi’s greatest hits—like the short rib tacos that sparked his empire—with new, Vegas-only offerings.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018

    Here are the best restaurants in Las Vegas in 2018: Esther’s Kitchen, NoMad, Cleaver, Block 16 and beyond.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018

    You cannot not order the roast chicken for two.

  • A&E

    Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2018

    Be sure to order the vampire dip. Think of the best cheese fondue you’ve ever had, and you’ve got an idea.

  • Features

    Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018

    “We were a desert of beer culture in 1999. There was no such thing as craft beer in Las Vegas back then.”

  • A&E

    Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018

    You get to eat with tweezers!

  • A&E

    Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018

    Tender wrappers, each plumped up to the size of a playing card, swaddle a juicy pork/vegetable blend worthy of being trumpeted on the marquee.

  • Taste

    Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018

    Ever find yourself craving fish salsa?

  • A&E

    Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018

    The eel/roe/sea urchin trilogy is a destination dish, as is the oxtail croque monsieur.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018

    Every day is like Friday.

  • A&E

    Thursday, July 26, 2018

    The uni duo allows diners to compare the subtle differences in salinity between Santa Barbara, California, and Hokkaido, Japan, versions.

  • A&E

    Thursday, May 31, 2018

    Their recently unveiled brunch immediately vaulted to the upper echelon of our city’s’ midday offerings. It’s that good.

  • A&E

    Thursday, May 24, 2018

    Block 9 is less a new restaurant than a quick-service Secret Kitchen.

  • Taste

    Monday, May 14, 2018

    From the Grand Tasting at Caesars Palace to Picnic at the Park to Black Tap at Venetian, we were all over the big Strip food fest.

  • A&E

    Thursday, April 26, 2018

    At 99 cents each, you can make a reasonable meal from four of the steamed dumplings, which are like Chinese shumai—wonton wrappers swaddling savory pork.

  • A&E

    Thursday, April 12, 2018

    Bonus: Some dishes are sent out on a robot cart!

  • A&E

    Thursday, March 15, 2018

    Beyond tacos, the menu features a collection of ceviches, cocktails and tostadas, all of them seafood-centric.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018

    It features a menu with lighter fare paying homage to the Amalfi Coast in Southern Italy.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018

    The time put into the soup is apparent.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Jan. 25, 2018

    Triple garlic yakisoba comes in a Chinese takeout container, while mapo tofu Frito pie arrives atop a sliced-open Fritos bag.

  • Taste

    Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018

    Last year, four location added growler fill stations, rotating in kegs of Pizza Port’s Bacon & Eggs coffee porter, Lovelady’s peanut butter-laced Paleo Porter and more.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017

    You must see the Cubana Mexicana torta to truly believe it.

  • Taste

    Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017

    The Black Sheep, Momofuku, Sparrow + Wolf and more.

  • A&E

    Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017

    One of the most recognizable faces in the local scene is back on the Strip.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017

    If you’re not sweating it, you’re not getting it.

  • A&E

    Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017

    “Once a dish is right, it’s time to change it.”

  • Taste

    Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017

    The outstanding skewers are fast becoming destination dishes.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017

    Offerings include the “Butcher Block” Craft Burger, ready to take its place among the hierarchy of the Valley’s best.

  • Features

    Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017

    From Tacos El Gordo to China Poblano, see the best tacos in Las Vegas.

  • Taste

    Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017

    Patty tries to talk me into one of her cinnamon rolls. I regret not taking her advice on that one.

  • A&E

    Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017

    Frozen beer, flaky potato pancakes and much more await at Palazzo.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017

    Chef Josh Horton isn’t serving any old bar food. The former Cili at Bali Hai executive sous has high-end chops.

  • A&E

    Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017

    Dig if you will the picture, of you and I engaged in a fish.

  • A&E

    Thursday, July 27, 2017

    Local Greek options have expanded impressively, particularly in the southwest Valley.

  • Taste

    Thursday, July 6, 2017

    The menu highlights artisanal ingredients like Hudson Valley duck ham on the duck Reuben and the Savini truffle sauce on the truffle honey grilled cheese.

  • A&E

    Thursday, July 6, 2017

    Gordon Ramsay Steak's special anniversary tasting menu has been extended through the end of August.

  • A&E

    Thursday, July 6, 2017

    Executive chef Rachel LeGloahec, formerly of the Robuchon restaurants at MGM Grand, has crafted a precise and concise menu.

  • A&E

    Thursday, June 15, 2017

    Unless you had your ear to the ground, you missed out on the single case of Firestone Walker’s Stickee Monkee each Lee’s location received a couple weeks back.

  • Reviews

    Thursday, May 18, 2017

    The Polish dumplings might be ubiquitous in my hometown of Chicago, but fresh ones are rare finds in the desert.

  • Dining

    Monday, May 1, 2017

    Spago's 25th anniversary, Jaleo's Lunch Like a Spaniard and the Grand Tasting.

  • Reviews

    Thursday, April 27, 2017

    Perhaps the most intriguing part of the menu is dedicated to South Indian specialties.