Las Vegas has long been known as a city of forgotten nights, lost dreams, and washed-up star residencies - but only recently has it become more of a food destination. And between planning hotel room blocks and coordinating flights, you don’t have time to research which restaurants will actually be worth your casino winnings. That’s why we’re here.
We have you covered with everything from where to have a blow-out steak dinner to where to recover and escape the craziness for a couple of hours. That way you can focus on your Google alert for the Celine Dion tickets you’ve not-so-secretly wanted for years.
After a day of exploring, treat yourself to a foot massage and then grab some homemade soup dumplings at Shanghai Taste in the Shanghai Plaza. The array of dumplings, like the pan-fried sheng jian or the flagship xiao long bao, along with specialties like the cold sliced ox tongue, is enough to bring you and whoever you’re with after a long day of shopping or photos with showgirls on The Strip back to life. Once you finish your dumpling feast, take a walk around the iconic plaza after you snag black sesame soft serve at Somi Somi nearby. Anticipate a wait to get in (especially on winter weekends), but know that it’ll 100% be worth it.
We once read an ancient proverb that roughly translated to: If you can see Iberico ham hanging as you walk into a place, you’re in for a good night. And while we may or may not have made that up, EDO Gastro Tapas and Wine is the restaurant that proves it. Any dish at this Spring Valley spot with that Iberico is a must, along with a few things from the long cocktail and wine lists, though there’s also a $65 tapas tasting menu that’s an absolute steal.
From a gorgeous wall of technicolor bottles and a one-of-a-kind hanging woven art piece in the main dining area to the welcoming smell of homemade focaccia and garlic confit, Al Solito Posto delivers for a night out with friends or arguing with your family over how many pastas to order. The bar is a great place to sit for a Happy Hour pizzette and to look through their extensive list of wines and spirits, or take a crack at experimenting with their Negroni bar where your chosen spirits are mixed to create a custom drink. But if you can, get a table by the open kitchen to get a look into the inner workings of the menu, especially the rigatoni alla vodka that we’re still having trouble putting into words. Finish the evening with an amaro nightcap and the classic Italian rainbow cake, which is a good choice no matter who you bring here.
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From the spiral staircase to the library’s worth of books lining the walls, it would be easy to assume that the entire Nomad budget was spent on the space. But then you look at the menu and realize that’s only half the story - there’s caviar service, tuna tartare, and a roast chicken stuffed with truffles and foie gras. It’s one of the best places on the Strip (and the city in general) for a very special - and very expensive - night out. So if you’re looking for that classic Vegas experience of spending approximately a month’s rent on a meal, make a reservation (Thurs-Mon) at the Nomad.
It’s a fact that the Arts District is one of the best new hangs Vegas has to offer and it’s another fact that one key component is Main St. Provisions. You’ll find the cozy, cool spot right in the center of busy Main Street and the best way to experience the menu is family style. Share dishes like their selection of smoked meats and homemade pate, rillette, mousse with extra fry bread, and rabbit boudin with your table before bopping next door to Velveteen Rabbit for some after-dinner cocktails.
In Vegas, you might go to bed at 5pm after a pool party or have breakfast at 3pm one day because that’s when everyone finally woke up. Or you might need a second dinner at 1am when you plan on being out until dawn - and that’s when you head to Tacos El Gordo. Open every day until 2am (4am on weekends), it’s a great late night spot, especially since preemptive tacos have been proven to help prevent hangovers. It’s going to be busy no matter when you stop by, but the service is fast and efficient, and you can use the time in line to devise your course of attack. Make sure you get the carne asada and beef tongue tacos, though after waiting that long, you could just go ahead and get one of each - and maybe a quesadilla for the road.
The Summerlin area of Vegas is dense with food options, but across from all the less interesting spots at Tivoli Village resides Chinglish. Unlikely marriages are a longtime Vegas trope and although not all work out, this place is here to stay. It’s a family-owned operation produced from a combination of Cantonese and Jewish upbringings with two separate concepts out of one building. You’ll find kosher options and great takeout at Kosher Chinglish while also having the opportunity to explore the full menu at Chinglish Cantonese Wine Bar. Poh Poh’s chicken dumplings are a staple at both and should be experienced by all. Explore the wine list or enjoy a cocktail at their colorful bar with a friend or anyone else who likes dumplings and wine as much as you do.
Like double dates and renting a paddleboat, there are some things you shouldn’t do alone. The same goes for Cleaver - to experience this place fully, you need to bring a group. You can’t go wrong with any of the steaks, but the 64-oz Cleaver Ribeye is what will guarantee that everyone else in the restaurant looks at your table with a mix of jealousy and fear. This spot right off the Strip also has one of the best Happy Hours (from 5pm-3am daily with rotating specials every weekend), when most of the steaks are at least 20% off.
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After a night of stopping through all of the reopened clubs, it can be nice to get off The Strip and remind yourself what normal decibel levels sound like. This is when you should head about 10 minutes out of town to Meraki Greek Grill. The dining room is bright with natural light and classic seascapes of coastal Greece. And while the atmosphere of this place might not quite bring you back to neutral, the avgolemono (basically Greek chicken noodle soup) is a great start. From there, the lamb burger or Great Greek Gyro will give you a renewed sense of life to continue your Vegas adventure, or the saganaki (pan-seared cheese) will assist in your afternoon recovery nap.
Ferraro's Italian Restaurant & Wine Bar
Sometimes it’s hard to keep mafia movies straight since they all usually contain at least two of the following: family drama, double-crossings, and an old-school Italian restaurant. But what we can keep straight are our favorite Italian spots, and Ferraro’s is right at the top. Open since 1985, this Las Vegas institution serves handmade pasta and an incredible osso buco (that you should definitely order). Pair that with a bottle from their wine list that’s so long it has a table of contents, before you ask the table next to you what really happened at Cheryl’s wedding and see if you can add some fuel to the fire.
You consider yourself a pretty creative person. You’ve been getting creative with your betting strategies, you got pretty creative with how many people can comfortably fit in one hotel room, and now you want the most creative food you can find. Get a table at Sparrow and Wolf. When it opened in 2017, it was one of the hardest reservations to get, and while it’s slightly easier now, it’s still one of our top dinner spots off the Strip. There are dishes like shitake-crusted striped bass and wagyu ribeye with sweet onion and tosazu. Or you can just leave the decisions to the kitchen with the $135 tasting menu. The small plates are somewhat reasonably priced, but they can add up, so bring a few people if you want to be able to try a lot without spending a ton.
Located in a strip mall on the north-ish west side of the valley is Forte Tapas, which fills a unique niche of bringing Spanish small plates and Eastern European comfort food together. Known for their khachapuri, this is a great place to catch up with a group of friends or your family without the typical flashy distractions you’ll find on The Strip. Make sure to save room for the fried beef dumplings and the marinated herring too.
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When you need a break from wearing heels or a brief hiatus from massive steaks, head to The Black Sheep. Usually, food this good means putting on your dry-clean-only clothes and making a reservation a month in advance. Thankfully, this place feels way more casual - you won’t be out of place in jeans - and reservations aren’t hard to come by. Bring a group to share dishes like salmon skin tacos, fried beef crisps, and a whole fried rainbow trout, and split a bottle (or three) of wine - a large majority are under $45. And while it’s only about a 15-minute drive from the Strip, it still feels like an escape from the craziness for a few hours.
Vegas isn’t for everyone; it’s loud, bright, and despite your highest hopes, those cards on the streets don’t have pictures and stats of ball players on them. But sometimes you have to plan your sister’s bachelorette party or you get invited to the yo-yo national sales conference. Thankfully, there’s Mama Bird. It’s a more low-key Southern spot where you can take a break from people constantly trying to hustle or upsell you on everything, and it’s far enough from the center of town to feel a bit removed - in a good way. Get the salt and pepper brisket, which is some of the best you’ll find in Vegas, and the Wicked Deviled Eggs, because you can never go wrong with candied jalapenos.
Nevada is completely landlocked and mostly desert, so it’s not somewhere you’d expect to find a lot of high-quality seafood. But we’re pretty sure Other Mama secretly found an entire ocean in their backyard because they have one of the best raw bars in the city and a seafood-focused menu with everything from a whole grilled fish, to french toast and caviar. It’s a small space with fewer than 50 seats, so try not to bring everyone you’ve ever met, but if someone does tag along who’s not so into things that once lived in water, they have a great steak with miso hollandaise too.
The day after you eat at Americana, you might be a little cagey when people ask what you did last night. Not because anything went wrong, but because you want to keep it all to yourself for a little while. It’s located about 30 minutes from the Strip, but when you’re on day four of a work convention and your team’s eyes need a break from the perpetually blinking lights, take them here. This place has a great weekly harvest menu that changes regularly and comes with endless house wine pairings. Coupled with a patio area overlooking Lake Jacqueline, it’s the perfect place to impress everyone from your assistant to your boss’s boss.
There is no wrong time to visit Mon Ami Gabi, but there is a wrong place to sit when you get there. This French bistro just inside of the Paris Hotel has one of the best views of the Bellagio fountains on the Strip, so whether you’re here for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner, a seat outside is mandatory. And while most restaurants on the Strip are impossible to get into last minute, Mon Ami Gabi almost always has tables available making it a great walk-in option.
You frequently daydream about quitting your job and walking the streets of Rome with a slice of pizza in hand - it’s ok, we all have. Once you open your eyes and realize you’re craving a good slice, Pizzeria Monzu is basically the next best thing. Their Roman-style pies are some of the best around and if you really want to confuse your body and probably everyone around you, get both the Pork Reigns and the Veggie. Now that you think about it, you look way better in your daydreams with two slices of pizza in your hands anyway.
If you’re going to eat one bowl of ramen in this city, it should be at Jinya. Unfortunately, that fact isn’t much of a secret - so you’ll usually have to wait. You could go during the day when it’s less crowded, but the full experience only happens on weekend nights. There’s a sort of camaraderie that develops between a room full of people willing to wait for a perfect bowl of soup - though apparently sharing an interest in Harry Potter and recreational disc golf doesn’t mean you should lean over and try a bite from their bowl. You have to draw the line somewhere.
Secret Pizza might not be as secret as it once was, but it’s still home to some of the best pizza in all of Vegas. The line snakes its way down a long hallway in The Cosmopolitan lined with old records and will be made up of people either just starting their nights or just ending theirs and arguing about who got closest to Jason Derulo’s private booth. The menu is simple, offering a few by-the-slice options and whole pies. The biggest secret you’ll have to keep when you leave here is that you don’t plan on sharing any of the slices you’re smuggling back to your hotel room.