Where to Eat in Las Vegas Right Now
The best restaurants in Las Vegas right now.
Hard to believe, but we're closing in on a full year of the COVID-19 pandemic. It's been an especially tough time for dining establishments, so if you've got any money to spend (in the form of a $600 "stimulus" or otherwise), enjoy a night out at one of the best restaurants in Las Vegas right now. They're doing their best—against all odds—to keep you fed, even as vaccines are (slowly) being rolled out to the general public. To comply with current Nevada guidelines, reservations are required and seating is limited to 25% capacity. All employees are required to wear masks and customers are expected to cover up their faces as well when walking between tables or using the bathroom. The good news—there's lots of great food to enjoy, even if you stick to delivery and carryout. Think of the following list as a starting point for adding check marks to your Las Vegas bucket list of essential dining experiences.
Main Street Provisions
The buzz: Tucked between the awesome cocktails of Velveteen Rabbit and the great pizza of Good Pie, Main Street Provisions couldn't have a better location in the fast-growing Downtown Arts District. It's a rustic but modern space where guests can view Justin Kinglsey Hall and his team at work in an open kitchen.
The food: Main Street Provisions doesn't linger too long in any single category, but it's hard not to think of the meats as the heart and soul of the restaurant, whether it's the exceptional butcher plate appetizer (which on any given day may include bacon, lamb rillette, and chicken liver mousse), tender venison tataki, or a smoked heritage ham steak. If you really want things to get interesting, try the rich rabbit and pork sausage or the Southern-style quail gumbo. Yet there's also clear affection for California-inspired seafood and plant-based dishes like a slow-roasted yam with BBQ-glazed beets and crispy onions.
The cost: Appetizers, salads, and sides $8-21. Entrees are $15-50. Beer $6-25, wine glasses $9-15, and cocktails $9-13.
The buzz: The already-busy Chinatown dining scene continues to heat up with the opening of Robata En, where former Yonaka chef Ramir De Castro is given the freedom to stretch his creativity. The name suggests an emphasis on grilled meats—and there's plenty of that—but the sushi and seafood is an even better reason to keep coming back. The dining room is large enough for comfortable social distancing between tables, which sit underneath the subtle glow of dramatic overhead light fixtures, leaving the brightest lights directed toward the sushi bar.
The food: Much of the food is divided between cold and warm plates, and a complete meal is equally divided between both. Begin with the creamy deviled eggs and Sake Orenji (salmon enhanced with bright citrus flavors) before taking matters into your own hands by grilling slices of wagyu ribeye on a hot stone. A lot of restaurants claim everything is made from scratch, but from the uni pasta entree to the yuzu sorbet dessert, Robata En really means it. Although if you really want to wrap up your meal in style, request the fresh-baked cookies served hot with ube jam and white chocolate sprinkles.
The cost: Starters and cold plates $8-27, warm plates $19-59, and omakase platters $150-240. Sake flights are $21 with bottles anywhere from $5 to $555.
The buzz: Out of all the restaurants at the new Circa resort, 8 East isn't the fanciest, but it's the most compelling. Owner Dan Coughlin builds upon his success at Le Thai, collaborating with Executive Chef Steve Piamchuntar on a more varied menu that borrows elements from Thai, Chinese, Taiwanese, and Japanese street food. The understated dining room, heavy on wood decor and tucked away in the corner of the casino floor, only adds to the charm.
The food: Heavier dishes like the New York Strip (loaded with Asian spices) and the lobster fried rice pack in hearty flavors, but 8 East is more intriguing when sharing smaller dishes. The filet carpaccio tastes even better than it looks, colorfully decorated with crunchy bits of purple potato, peanut sauce, and microgreens. The Duck Roll is like a mini-Peking Duck while the ginger chicken dumplings overachieve with a welcome spicy bite. Most of the cocktails are classics modified with unique spices like the Roku Negroni, but there's enough tea and whiskey flights to keep things interesting.
The cost: Tapas $6-25, entrees $14-16, and desserts $9. Tea is $3.5 and cocktails are $12.50.
The buzz: At last check, the Palms remains closed, leaving the wonderful Vetri Cucina inactive on the 56th floor of the resort. No worries. Marc Vetri packed up his operation and moved it to the Red Rock Resort at a space that will hopefully cease being a revolving door for Italian concepts. Osteria Fiorella is a little more casual, but seems to have quickly found a comfortable groove—almost like it should've been here all along.
The food: Vetri's recipes built a reputation in Philadelphia before expanding elsewhere, giving a contemporary spin to regional Italian cuisine. A few familiar staples are on display—perfectly rolled gnocchi, wood-fired pizzas, and fresh seafood—with new tweaks and modifications. Play it cool and order the off-menu Cacio e Pepe pizza or just come by for the weekend brunch when the same dish is topped with egg and bacon.
The cost: Pasta $17-23, pizzas $16-22, and entrees $24-60. Beer, wine glasses, and cocktails $7-20.
Chinglish Cantonese Wine Bar
The buzz: Don't sleep on this one. Chinglish (a name inspired by the family-owned business' blend of Chinese and Western cultures) may seem like a trendy, contemporary hangout for the Summerlin crowd, but take a look through the long horizontal window that separates the kitchen from the dining room. You'll see a master at work, 50-year veteran chef Po-Fai Lam, producing authentic Hong Kong-style Cantonese cuisine that competes with fancier restaurants on the Strip for a fraction of the price.
The food: The Peking Duck is prepared in a custom oven, allowing the birds to hang vertically as the fat drips off. The meat is served in paper-thin crepes instead of bao buns to fully absorb the flavor. Make sure to also order the hand-folded chicken dumplings, candied walnut prawns, and a made-to-order hot and sour soup with customized spice levels ranging from mild to nuclear. Yeah, but what about the "wine bar" part of the name? The vino selection isn't huge, but changes week to week with a compelling focus on small producers and unique labels.
The cost: Appetizers $9-18, entrees $17-27 with the Peking Duck $32 half or $55 full. Glasses of wine begin at $10.
The buzz: No bland and boring cucumber rolls here. Chikyu is proving vegan sushi can be indulgent and yes, full of flavor. Vietnamese chef John Le mastered the concept at Shizen in San Francisco before moving to Las Vegas to open his own place. The menu is only available for curbside pickup and delivery while the pandemic continues, but even inside a carryout box, the food comes with a colorful presentation to match the wow-factor of every bite.
The food: You won't see a lot of substitutes (like fake tuna or shrimp) to fill a meatless void. Instead, vegetables are prepared with time and careful detail to produce intriguing flavor combinations. The specialty rolls, named after Nevada wildflowers, make good use of tempura sweet potato, spicy tofu, smoked beets, and vegetables you won't usually see in your grocery cart—like burdock, takuan (pickled daikon radish), or rocoto peppers. The real magic, however, is in the simplicity of the nigiri, which is much more than just a vegetable or fruit slice on top of rice. The green mango, for example, is pickled for three days with cloves and other spices for an intriguing bite that will appeal to an audience beyond those simply looking for a great vegan restaurant in Las Vegas.
The cost: Starters and small plates $4-14, nigiri and rolls $5-13.
The Legends Oyster Bar & Grill
The buzz: The Legends Oyster Bar & Grill had the misfortune of opening at the onset of the pandemic, but seems to have found some loyal regulars. Executive Chef Jack Jarukasem, who worked his way up through the ranks with Caesars Entertainment, is carrying out his own vision with a menu that focuses heavily on seafood, served in an aquatic-themed dining room with a raw bar. The restaurant is one of the few in Vegas that's embraced the BYOB concept, and showing off your own wine bottle is part of the fun (and saves a few dollars on the bill).
The food: Oysters and raw scallops are highlights of the raw bar, but stick to hot food for delivery and to-go orders. You can't go wrong with the pan roast of lobster, crab, and shrimp in a creamy tomato sauce, gumbo served on a plate in deconstructed form, or a Louisiana-style seafood boil. Jarukasem balances his creativity with flavorful takes on familiar dishes, including lightly fried calamari and New England clam chowder served inside a bread bowl.
The cost: Appetizers are $5-12. Entrees are $15-27. No extra charge for BYOB.
Bugsy & Meyer's Steakhouse
The buzz: Vegas loves an old-school steakhouse and despite being one of the newest restaurants on the Strip, Bugsy & Meyer's is a celebration of vintage style and local history. Not only is the steakhouse named after the mobsters who opened the Flamingo, it includes a bakery "storefront" as the entrance, allowing guests to sneak in and walk past the kitchen Goodfellas-style to reach the dining room. There's even a speakeasy in the back, which is actually the best place to have your meal if a table is available.
The food: Executive Chef Honorio Mecinas leads a kitchen team that does everything possible to make sure the substance of the food matches the sizzle of the dining room. Bone-in cuts are dry-aged in-house for 60 days and it's hard to resist the tenderness of the prime rib cap. A seafood tower is a predictable, popular appetizer, but the calories and time are better spent on The Cadillac (a separated shellfish cocktail of lobster, shrimp, and crab) and the prime beef tartare mixed with a tart foie gras aioli. Unfortunately, the tableside Old Fashioned cart is on hold until you-know-what goes away, but feel free to ask the bartender to customize something fun.
The cost: Appetizers are $12-28 (with the seafood towers $80-158). Steaks and entrees range from $34 to $140. Cocktails are $14-30 and wine is $13-40.
Johnny C's Diner
The buzz: Imagine a classic American diner, but with dishes made with the best ingredients and preparation possible. That's the idea behind Johnny C's Diner, a new concept by Vegas chef Johnny Church, who previously built up plenty of local goodwill working at top restaurants on and off the Strip.
The food: Familiar breakfast and lunch staples are given a fresh makeover. A good example is the Cuban sandwich, made with hand-carved ham and pork that's marinated for 24 hours and cooked over white oak. The burgers go down easy with every bite, prepared with buttery dry-aged angus beef that tastes even more robust against the crunch of house-made pickles. Salads are prepared with ingredients straight from the chef's own personal garden. The diner, just outside the Las Vegas Motorcoach Resort, is planning a few pop-up events in the near future and can be booked for private chef tastings for large parties in the evenings.
The cost: Soups, salads, and appetizers $4-14. Burgers and sandwiches $10-14.
The buzz: Jimmy Li scored one of our favorite Chinatown restaurants with Niu Gu, but the chef has moved on to a brighter, more comfortable space with Shanghai Taste. The dining room is small, but carries an undeniable energy, especially when watching the kitchen team hand-roll dumplings through large windows. The spot stands out as one of the few homegrown concepts in Shanghai Plaza, a new shopping destination heavy on Asian chains.
The food: The signature xiao long bao—or soup dumplings—mix pork and crab fillings with a flavorful broth, and quickly became a popular hit with about 2,000 pieces served a day before the pandemic hit. A wok-seared version—sheng jian—has a crispy bottom and mild flavor that pairs well with slippery, translucent bean noodles in a spicy beef curry soup. Overall, the restaurant's Shanghai cuisine tends to be on the sweeter side and the restaurant delivers on bright flavors with a bread-like wheat gluten dish and traditional pork spare ribs served in small nugget-like pieces. Just put down the chopsticks and chew the meat right off the bone.
The cost: Small plates and dumplings range from $3.95 to $13.95, rice and noodle dishes are $9.95 to $14.85.
Mayfair Supper Club
The food: Just like the performances, the menu aims to be a people pleaser with chilled shellfish, upscale sushi rolls, caviar, and steaks sharing real estate on the menu. The old-school tableside presentations are set to return after the pandemic ends—soon, right? A slow-roasted Mashima prime rib pairs well with a glazed honeynut squash side dish topped with pumpkin seeds, mint, and parmesan.
The cost: Cocktails $21-$35, salads and appetizers $22-$26, sushi and raw bar $22-$32, entrees $35-75, and $125 for caviar service.
The buzz: After earning acclaim and national recognition for Fat Choy and the now-closed Flock & Fowl, Sheridan Su has another labor of love with wife and business partner Jenny Wong. Every Grain is built on the joy of simplicity—a small dining room in a quiet strip mall a few blocks east of Downtown's more familiar neighborhoods. It's one of the best low-key, affordable lunches in town (the restaurant isn't open for dinner). Much like Su's famous Hainan Chicken from Flock & Fowl, the food at Every Grain is inspired by travels to Taiwan.
The food: Lu Rou Fan is a purple-ish combination of forbidden, koshihikari, and brown rice topped with crumbles of garnish-like braised pork belly. Add roasted spring chicken or a pounded-thin pork chop fried in sweet potato crumbs to transform the dish into a full entree. Small-plate appetizers include Chinese-style greens (often braised cabbage or baby bok choy), marinated cucumbers with pickled African hibiscus, or a fun, spicy Asian take on movie theater-style cheddar nachos. The scallion pancake is served with French onion dip and a touch of chili oil—an idea inspired by a customer that sounds odd, but totally works. As for drinks, go with an agua fresca, made on the spot with fresh seasonal fruit, or a selection from the tea cart, which features leaves harvested from sustainable farms around the world.
The cost: Small plates $1.99-$4.99, rice and noodle dishes $4.99-$12.99, and drinks $3-$5.99.
The buzz: Graffiti Bao is inspired by Chef Marc Marone's visits to Singapore hawker markets and his own affection for the New York-style Chinese takeaway he grew up on. The result is an affordable menu of clean-tasting Asian cuisine that works equally well as takeout or in the intimate '80s pop culture-influenced strip mall dining room.
The food: The restaurant gets lots of attention for its lightly seared bao buns, which come in six options, including a seasonal dessert. The prices are so low, it's easy to mix and match spring rolls, scallion pancakes, and other appetizers without making a major investment. Wok-tossed entrees allow beef, chicken, pork, prawns, and tofu to be prepared in familiar combinations, including kung pao, mandarin, or spicy Szechuan style. The Singapore ramen is served with the broth on the side. Add it to your preference to cut the spicy bite of the noodles. Graffiti Bao also serves as a ghost kitchen of sorts for Gemma Gemma's Square Pies, which are among the best pizza options in Vegas.
The cost: Small bites range from $3.88 to $8.88. Entrees are $8.88 to $23.88.
The buzz: One of the best Japanese restaurants in Vegas, Sushi Kame works best when you don't think about the menu too hard and leave the fate of your meal in the hands of Chef Eric Kim and his experienced kitchen team. Indulgent, seasonal tasting menus are the specialty, whether it's omakase in a private dining area or an all-encompassing kaiseki experience in the main room.
The food: No matter how you order, each bite is based on carefully sourced ingredients and delicate preparation—seen to full effect in fresh seafood rolled into sushi just seconds before entering your mouth, lightly seared certified Kobe beef, and a lobster sashimi served outside its shell with caviar and gold flakes. Even the hotpots feel like something special. Sushi Kame succeeds on multiple levels, covering a complete meal from beginning to end, not to mention some of the best cocktails and desserts in Chinatown.
The cost: Individual plates run anywhere from $3 to $75 with authentic Japanese Wagyu and live seafood at market prices. Omakase is $195 per person, kaiseki is $350 per person.
The buzz: La Strega (Italian for "the witch") features cuisine inspired by Chef Gina Marinelli's affection for the varied regions of Italy. The hardest part is choosing between two distinctively different dining rooms. One is dark and seductive. The other bright and open with a full view of the kitchen.
The food: Flavors are front and center, and never overwhelmed by house-made sauces. Welcome touches include the vibrant pop of preserved lemon in the linguini and clams, salty caper berries in the Caesar salad, earthy dandelions in the pesto bucatini, and the subtle sweetness of honey in the flatbread crust. A limited-edition lunch menu with piadinas (flatbread sandwiches) was launched for curbside pickup as an affordable option during the pandemic. Call La Strega directly for prices and the latest selection.
The cost: Starters are $7-27. Pizza and pasta are $7-25. Mains are $26-72. Cocktails are $12-14, wine is $9-20, and beer is $6.
The buzz: The latest Thai concept by Bank Atcharawan takes the best of his former restaurants—the traditional dishes of Chada Thai and the street flavors of Chada Street—and blends them together in Lamaii. The name translates to "delicate," which carries through in Lamaii's minimalist, modern plating that makes full use of flowers and microgreens.
The food: Dishes are served in a stylish dining room, where contemporary and imported Thai furnishings complement each other to full effect. Fans will be eager to see old favorites, like the fried duck and crispy beef salad, but also new creations like a beautiful steak tartare flavored with lime and fish sauce with Isaan-inspired spices. Of course, knowing that Atcharawan first made his name as the sommelier of Lotus of Siam, the wine list is worth a visit alone and is offered at low markups from compelling small producers. There are slightly more whites than reds on the menu, including sweeter Rieslings, which help counter the spiciness throughout much of the food.
The cost: Small plates are $7-22. Mains are a very affordable $14-25. Cocktails are $12-16, wine is $9-12, and beer is $5-26.
The buzz: Don't let the strip mall location fool you. Partage is something special in Las Vegas. The stylish but casual restaurant makes French fine dining accessible in both price and atmosphere without sacrificing quality, ingredients, preparation, or presentation. Ask about the chef's table, which seats four to six people and has front-row views of the kitchen in action.
The food: Dishes are available individually or as five-, seven-, or nine-course tasting menus, which generally change every two weeks. Signature items include braised oxtail from Chef Yuri Szarzewski's family recipe, duck breast layered with foie gras, and scallops with a sesame and herb crust. An 18-oz smoked ribeye and fresh whole fish are both presented tableside while a nori ravioli with cashew cheese leads a surprisingly strong lineup of vegan options. The owners' first Vegas restaurant Eatt recently reopened as French Cellar, a boutique for wine, cheese, and charcuterie.
The cost: Multi-course tasting menus generally run from $50 to $100 per person with optional wine pairings $30-70. Cocktails are $14-16. Glasses of wine are $12-25.
Edo Gastro Tapas And Wine
The buzz: EDO is pronounced "ee-dee-oh," after the phrase "extra day off" as well as Chef Oscar Amador Edo, who carries out a personalized vision for Spanish cuisine. The restaurant is using the slower pace of the pandemic to experiment with the menu and things have only gotten better. The late-night pintxos menu is on hold, but guests can still enjoy a multi-course tasting menu that's truly one of the best deals in Las Vegas. The wine list is affordable, but loaded with exceptional choices. Order at least one of the three house gin and tonics.
The food: Chef Edo is leaning further into his Catalan background with a renewed emphasis on seafood and subtle French and Mediterranean influences. You really taste the quality of ingredients in the escabeche, with savory mushrooms complimenting bright chunks of lobster and king crab in one perfect bite. A similarly satisfying combination of textures is found in a 30-day aged strip loin carpaccio served on a cheese pastry. Short rib is braised for 11 hours in white wine and sherry, producing a tenderness that balances the robust flavor of the meat. Iberico, seafood, and cheeses are imported from Europe. The team is now making their own olive oil bread in house and drawing even heavier on seasonal ingredients. Regulars are told to wait two weeks before returning, because you'll almost always be able to try something new.
The cost: Appetizers are $3.75-17 and entrees are $17-29, but the tasting menu is the way to go at $60 per person. Specialty gin and tonics and other cocktails are $12-16. Wine is $7-29.
The buzz: Esther's Kitchen has firmly established itself as the signature restaurant for the fast-growing Downtown Arts District. By sourcing ingredients from local farmers markets, Chef James Trees has put together a fresh, dynamic menu of Italian-focused dishes that evolve with the season.
The food: Any meal begins with the fresh-baked sourdough bread, which comes with a full lineup of dips and toppings. (No matter what you do, ask for the anchovy butter.) Dishes are ideal for sharing, including fresh-made pastas paired with flavorful ingredients instead of heavy sauces. No matter the size of your party, order at least one pizza to share. Trees has his own self-described "American artisanal" dough with a perfect balance of salt and olive oil for a chewy, crunchy crust. Even the ice cream is made in house with seasonal influences. For those on the west side of town, the chef is putting together a menu of elevated Italian classics like chicken parm and minestrone in a new setting, Al Solito Posto, which is in soft-opening mode at Tivoli Village with a grand opening scheduled in late January.
The cost: Pizzas are $14-17. Pastas and entrees are anywhere from $11 to $64. Beers are $3-8. Cocktails and glasses of wine are kept to $9-10.
Sparrow + Wolf
The buzz: Chef Brian Howard's ambitious restaurant represents a melting pot of cultures and cuisines with an evolving menu that never quite sits still. The cocktail program is one of the most underrated in town—with juice fresh pressed to order—and the Sunday brunch puts an eclectic spin on traditional favorites (prime example: a duck confit cinnamon roll stuffed with apricot chutney). The dining room has seen some changes over the years and the best tables are in a quiet side side room called the Library (and yes, it has bookshelves).
The food: Most of the food, from meats to vegetables, emerge from a wood-fired oven, offering a welcome smoky touch to dishes that range from bone marrow dumplings to lamb neck and even lasagna. Everything is perfect for sharing, including three-tier bento boxes. Meal kits, bread, and other specialty retail items are available for takeaway from the Sparrow + Wolf Pantry.
The cost: Appetizers and vegetable dishes are $5-23. Entrees are $15-50. Cocktails are $12-14, while a glass of wine is anywhere from $12 to $17.