Strip House might be the best steak house in Vegas that we never go to.
Why don’t you go there more often, ELV (is probably what you’re asking yourself right about now)?
Because, simply put, it is in Planet Hollywood — next to the MGM, the most annoying hotel for any local to get to.
And that’s a pity, because the food and the decor and the service at SH are all deeply satisfying…more pleasant in fact than many cacophonous hot spots like SW, N9NE and Old Homestead — places where hearing yourself think can be a chore.
This is a civilized place to be sure, where conversation is conducive to cozy-ing up to that special someone, or just gabbing away about whatever happened that day.
There’s something delightfully feminine about the red velveteen walls and the sexy, throwback photos of ladies throughout the place. And like we said, the service is on par with the best steakhouses anywhere.
So, it’s a shame, really, that we don’t cruise by this creative cow palace more, as the goods here are as tasty as you can get in any steakhouse, and some are so unique they make trudging through that interminable mall — called the Miracle Mile Shops, which serve as a giant commercial moat protecting the hotel from any kind of easy access* — worth the hike.
But trudge we do, because no meat emporium but SH has a starter as umami-filled as its Strip House Roasted Bacon with Russian dressing, and the lobster bisque possesses as much lobster-ness as any we’ve had in any haute cuisine palace.
As good as they are it is in the sides where this place really shines — the potatoes in particular. Goose fat potatoes come under a mound of crunch which you break through to experience ‘taters at their natural creaminess. Almost as good are the “Ripped” chunks of sauteed home fries, dusted with rosemary salt, and he chile-dusted fries with house-made ketchup are worth a trip all by themselves. Executive Chef Dustin Rixey told us he’s from New Mexic0 — hence the piquant dusting of roasted Anaheim reds — and his ketchup is no slouch either in the residual heat department.
There’s no faulting the black truffle creamed spinach either — it being an exemplary version of this (usually) boring, steakhouse mainstay, and they know a thing or two about how to saute their greens (as in beans) here too.
On the downside, the Caesar needed some oomph…as did the Maine lobster linguine. Both required more lemon juice to reach their potential. Our New York strip was a tad chewy, but plenty beefy, and we love the peppercorn char they get on their meat here — so a little extra mastication is a small price to pay.
And to end on a positive note: the a la carte sauces — Bordelaise, Stilton, Béarnaise and house steak sauce — are all so addictive they would make shoe leather taste good.
We finished with two desserts: a baked Alaska — the meringue of which tasted pre-made and gummy — and the 24-layer cake that appears like the small prow of a chocolate ocean liner on your table. Our advice: take the cake, cut through all those layers like the Normandie slicing through the Atlantic, and be prepared to swoon.
On second thought, maybe all that trudging was worth it.
ELV’s meal a deux was comped.
In the Planet Hollywood Hotel and Casino
3667 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, NV89109
* Your choices to enter Planet Hollywood are two (if you’re a local and not wandering in off the Strip): one, valet your car in back of the hotel and wait for a half hour to get it back on even a slowest night; or, two, self-park and walk through the entire, friggin’, circular mall (a good 10-15 minute hoi polloi death march through the slack-jawed hordes) to get to the entrance of the hotel.