When it comes to dining in Las Vegas, excellent options abound, as Vegas is one of the top tourist destinations in the country, and naturally has an excellent selection of restaurants. Some of the top gourmet dining establishments in the world can be found inside the casinos on the Vegas strip, and Vegas is also known for its abundance of all-you-can eat buffets for the hungry among us. Las Vegas is home to a large Latin and Asian population base, and is a transplant city with residents having moved to the city from all over the country, so there are many authentic ethnic and regional food options available both on and off the strip.
If you are looking for truly high-quality cuisine ranging from fresh seafood, to wood-fired pizza, to gourmet French staples, the all-you-can-eat at the Bellagio is world-renowned as likely the best in the city, but it is not cheap, particularly for the dinner and weekend dinner buffets. The Carnival World Buffet at the Rio, the Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan, and the Spice Market Buffet (featuring some delectable Middle-Eastern options) at Planet Hollywood are other excellent buffets worth checking out. Check out the off-strip Station Casinos’ (a chain of Vegas casinos located throughout the city) buffets if you are looking for a low-priced but reasonable quality buffet option popular among cost-conscious locals.
For the best in high-class fine dining in Vegas, it is pretty much impossible to top Picasso in the Bellagio resort. Featuring a gorgeous lake-front view, real-deal original Pablo Picasso artwork adorning the walls, and the masterwork of renowned chef Julian Serrano, it does not get better than Picasso. Famous celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck’s Cut steakhouse in the Palazzo is another excellent fine-dining option, as is the renowned chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa’s Nobu, where the menu is modeled after his restaurant of the same name in the Tribeca neighborhood of NYC. Chef Michael Mina’s restaurant, located in the Bellagio and named after himself (it is called simply Michael Mina) is another gourmet restaurant you should certainly visit if money allows. The five-course tasting menu is the way to go, and fortunately for the animal-friendly among us, there is a vegetarian five-course option available.
If Asian food is on your menu during your Sin City visit, Chef Bill Chan’s Grand Wok and Sushi Bar on Las Vegas Boulevard is an excellent choice, offering up pan-Asian cuisine from all corners of the continent. Featuring a tranquil atmosphere, sushi bar, and open kitchen design, both the aesthetics and the food at Grand Wok are superb. If you are looking for the best sushi Vegas has to offer, Master Sushi Chef Yoshinori Nakazawa’s Shibuya in the MGM Grand is unmatched. Not only does Shibuya epitomize what a real-deal sushi and sake bar should look and taste like, but also features excellent non-sushi Japanese cuisine from Executive Chef Stephane Chevet. For a hidden locals-favorite spot, try Kung Fu Thai and Chinese Restaurant on South Valley View Boulevard. Although the name and combination Thai/Chinese menu might seem a bit generic, the food is surprisingly excellent and very fairly-priced.
Considering Las Vegas’ old-school mafia ties and large New Yorker population, it is not a surprise that Italian cuisine is ample and authentic in Sin City. For a truly unique Italian dining experience, visit Bartolotta Ristorante Di Mare, located in the famous Wynn resort and casino. The restaurant is known for featuring unusual varieties of native European seafood you will not get to try at your everyday Italian restaurant. If seafood is not your thing, never fear, as there are plenty of other land-based options to suit your tastes. The prices are steep, although well worth it, so come, but do not come with an empty wallet. Other excellent options for Italian cuisine include Mediterranean-influenced Grotto located off-strip in the Downtown Golden Nugget casino, and longtime locals-favorite Piero’s, also off-strip on Convention Center Drive.
Las Vegas has an extremely large Hispanic population, and it follows suit that it is a major hub for Latin cuisine, particularly Mexican. Check out Agave on Charleston Boulevard for what is often considered the best Mexican cuisine in Vegas served up in a fun atmosphere featuring live music and more. If you are looking for an extremely authentic, sort of hole-in-the-wall Mexican option, check out Bonito Michoacan on South Decatur Boulevard. Other excellent choices include Lindo Moachanon East Desert Inn Road, Viva Mercado’s on South Rainbow, and Cozymel’s Mexican Grill on Hughes Center Drive. For cheap, no frills late-night Mexican food that goes down good after a long night of partying, try locals after-hours favorite Roberto’s, featuring several convenient locations throughout the city.
Other than gambling, Vegas is most famous for its lavish dining and drinking culture, making it a top destination for those who like to indulge in the pleasures of the taste buds. Whether you are looking to enjoy top-notch fine dining of world-class Paris/NY/LA quality, fill your stomach to the gills at an all-you-can eat seafood buffet, or enjoy some authentic Asian cuisine at an off-strip hole-in-the-wall hidden gem, you are certain to find the perfect culinary destination in Las Vegas.