Las Vegas Restaurants

Las Vegas is one of America's hottest restaurant markets. Nearly every big Strip property has at least one and often two or more celebrity-chef restaurants. Away from the Strip, the unprecedented population growth in the city's suburbs has brought with it a separate and continuous wave of new eateries, both familiar chains and increasing numbers of legitimate destination restaurants.

Casino-resort dining basically falls into one of three categories. In the top echelon are the properties that have a half dozen or more bona fide star-status restaurants: Aria, Bellagio, Caesars, The Cosmopolitan, Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand, Venetian/Palazzo, and Wynn/Encore. At the next level are those resorts with one or two stellar restaurants and a smaller range of worthwhile but not quite top-of-the-line options. On the Strip, these include The Cromwell, Mandarin Oriental, Mirage, Monte Carlo, New York–New York, Paris, Planet Hollywood, SLS Las Vegas, and Treasure Island. Off the Strip, you can add the Lucky Dragon, Palms, the Hard Rock, M Resort, The Rio All-Suite Hotel, Green Valley Ranch, the JW Marriott, and Red Rock Resort. Then there's everybody else: casino-resorts with maybe a decent eatery or two but that simply aren't known for great food.

Downtown Las Vegas has seen a big revitalization in the past several years, and that extends to restaurants. Although Downtown still lacks a destination restaurant, notable spots are Carson Kitchen, Therapy, Turmeric, Le Thai, and La Comida in Fremont East; and Pizza Rock and the older Triple George Grill in the Downtown 3rd District. There also are a number of good restaurants in the Downtown Container Park.

Outside the tourism corridor, Las Vegas has a number of marquee restaurants with increasing cachet among foodies from out of town—places such as Todd’s Unique Dining, Marché Bacchus, Nora's Italian Cuisine, and Lotus of Siam. There's great food to be had off the beaten path in Las Vegas, and you'll pay a lot less in these areas, too.

If you haven't been to Vegas in a few years, you'll notice some major changes. Names like Wolfgang Puck, Michael Mina, and Emeril Lagasse still have plenty of pull in this town, but the Vegas chefs commanding the most attention are French imports such as Pierre Gagnaire, Joël Robuchon, and Guy Savoy, along with vaunted U.S. chefs like Giada De Laurentiis, Charlie Palmer, and Mario Batali.

There's also a trend toward high-minded restaurants with exclusive-nightclub vibes. Note the success of see-and-be-seen Pan-Asian hot spot Hakkasan and Tao Asian Bistro & Nightclub, the youthful late-night haunts LAVO and FIX, and bordello-chic establishments such as Strip House—to name just a few. Elsewhere in town, Las Vegas's growing international—and especially Asian—population has created a market for some of the best Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, and Pan-Asian restaurants in the country.

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  • 1. Le Thai

    $$ | Downtown | Thai

    Noodles are the house specialty at this intimate restaurant in the Fremont East district of Downtown. Although most of the dishes are Thai ...Read More

  • 2. Archi's Thai Kitchen

    $$ | West Side | Thai

    Fans of Thai food flock here for spot-on exceptional chow with few surprises—just expertly prepared curries, tom yum soups, fish cakes, and...Read More

  • 3. Big Ern's BBQ

    $ | Downtown | Barbecue

    Big Ern's has great barbecue—don't miss the brisket —but an even bigger draw for kids may be the huge play structure in the center of the Downtown...Read More

  • 4. Biscuits and Bourbon

    $$ | American

    What warms the blood more swiftly at this down-home hang: the fresh-from-the-oven biscuits or the 80-plus varieties of bourbon? Find out at...Read More

  • 5. Blueberry Hill

    $$ | East Side | Diner

    This local minichain feels a bit like Denny's with an old-fashioned, family-owned vibe. And it serves far superior food, including hearty Mexican...Read More

  • 6. Border Grill Mandalay Bay

    $$$ | South Strip | American

    Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger are the popular, green-minded chefs who created this cheery, sophisticated outpost of their now-closed Santa...Read More

  • 7. Brera Osteria

    $$$ | North Strip | Italian

    The latest entry in the Viva Italiano ! culinary scene, Brera Osteria at the Grand Canal Shoppes (replacing Sixth + Mill) is a Milan-inspired...Read More

  • 8. Capriotti's Sandwich Shop

    $ | West Side | American

    This East Coast transplant with nearly 40 locations in the Valley satisfies Sin City's cravings for giant sub sandwiches, including a Philly...Read More

  • 9. Doña Maria Tamales

    $$ | Downtown | Mexican

    You'll forget you're in Las Vegas after a few minutes in this relaxed and unpretentious Downtown cantina. All of the combinations and specials...Read More

  • 10. Eat

    $$ | Downtown | Modern American

    Eat may serve only breakfast and lunch, but chef Natalie Young's food is so hearty (and so uniquely appealing), you may not feel the need for...Read More

  • 11. El Dorado Cantina

    $$$ | Summerlin South | Mexican

    Every day is Día de los Muertos at this chic, skull-festooned cantina in Tivoli Village, where a pair of brightly colored calacas guard the...Read More

  • 12. Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill

    $$$$ | Center Strip | British

    Three things stand out at this comfortable, casual restaurant, conceptualized by tyrannical celeb chef Gordon Ramsey: the libations, the cheery...Read More

  • 13. Grimaldi's Green Valley

    $$ | Pizza

    A branch of the legendary coal-fired pizza-baker nestled beneath the Brooklyn Bridge, this casual little joint in Henderson doesn't quite conjure...Read More

  • 14. Hash House A Go Go

    $$ | West Side | American

    Hearty appetites and a dash of patience will be richly rewarded at this quirky purveyor of so-called twisted farm food. Heaps of savory comfort...Read More

  • 15. Hot N Juicy Crawfish

    $$ | West Side | Seafood

    This busy eatery has developed a loyal following for its delicious, fresh seafood, where crawfish from Louisiana is delivered regularly and...Read More

  • 16. Il Fornaio Las Vegas

    $$$$ | South Strip | Italian

    This soothingly neutral Italian restaurant will satisfy carb cravings as well as yearnings for dishes that Grandma used to make. Crusty loaves...Read More

  • 17. L2 Texas BBQ

    $$ | East Side | Barbecue

    Taking its name from two owners (both named Larry), this barbecue joint moved to inherit the smoked meat addicts left stranded when Memphis...Read More

  • 18. La Comida

    $$$ | Downtown | Mexican

    This rustic restaurant and lounge is brought to you by Michael and Jenna Morton, late of the N9NE Group. The menu focuses on updated Mexican...Read More

  • 19. Lindo Michoacán

    $$ | East Side | Mexican

    Javier Barajas, the congenial owner and host of this colorful cantina group, named it for his home in Mexico. He presents outstanding specialties...Read More

  • 20. Mantra Masala

    $$ | West Side | Indian

    Indian-food purists insist it's no big deal to drive 15 minutes from the Strip to the back of a bland strip mall for exceptionally authentic...Read More

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