EATING LAS VEGAS – The 50 Essential Restaurants – 2014

Here it is food fans: our inclusive, independent, infallible, indispensable, indomitable, inevitable, individual, incorruptible index of Las Vegas 50 most “essential” restaurants. It represents our educated opinion of the best food and restaurant experiences Las Vegas has to offer, in descending order of importance to our food scene.

Put another way, these are the restaurants I would take another food writer, gourmet, world-class chef, or ardent food fan to if they asked me to take them on the ultimate epicurean tour of Vegas, and we had a month to complete the task. (For those of you who are wondering: every one of these places has been visited multiple times by yours truly. Many of them have fed us at least a half a dozen times, and in ten of them we’ve eaten more meals than we can count.)

Readers of the last printed edition of this title, will notice that 21 of the 50 entries are new — that’s how much our food scene has changed since we released the 2013 edition in November, 2012. The year ahead may be a quieter one as far as new openings are concerned, but don’t bet on it.

There may finally be enough interest (and affluent warm bodies) downtown to finally give that area some traction in the finer foods department (thank you Kerry Simon), and the venerable Strip hotels are going to be upping their games now that some of their stores are starting to show their age (are you listening MGM and Caesars?) Smaller hotels with a few, top flight offerings seem to be the wave of the future (à la the SLS), although Resorts World might be a behemoth that changes the game the way the Bellagio did in 1998.

All of us at Eating Las Vegas hope this will be the start of a tradition — that of releasing our 50 Essential list every Nevada Day/Halloween. We will be updating some of the reviews throughout the year, and you can look forward to our “new look” Web site coming on-line within the month, which will make accessing the 50 Essential much easier, as well as all past and current content.

In the meantime we will continue to give you Las Vegas’s only erudite, incisive, unfettered and un-compromised opinions on its restaurant and dining scene….and never forget that we at ELV stand by our ELV Guarantee: All Opinions Right Or Your Money Back!


1. Joël Robuchon

2. Restaurant Guy Savoy

3. L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon

4. Raku/Sweets Raku

5. Carnevino

6. Twist by Pierre Gagnaire

7. Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare

8. Kabuto Edomae Sushi

9. Picasso

10. Estiatorio Milos


11. Yonaka

12. China Poblano

13. Julian Serrano

14. Sage

15. Allegro

16. China MaMa

17. Mizumi

18. Le Cirque

19. db Brasserie

20. Giada – The Restaurant (on Earth – The Planet)

21. Rose.Rabbit.Lie.

22. Yusho

23. Carson Kitchen

24. Spago

25. Lotus of Siam

26. Michael Mina

27. CUT

28. Bouchon

29. Bazaar Meat

30. Eiffel Tower Restaurant

31. Forte

32. Due Forni

33.  Jaleo

34. Rao’s

35. District One

36. Chada Thai

37.  Cleo

38. I-Naba

39. Sen of Japan

40. B&B Ristorante

41. Monta

42. Nakamura-Ya

43. Mint Indian Bistro

44. Marche Bacchus

45. Ku Noodle

46. El Sombrero

47. Desnudo Tacos/47.1 Rodeo Tacos Barbacoa estilo Hidalgo

48. Zen Japanese Curry

49.  The Goodwich

50.  Art of Flavors

Honorable mention: Delmonico; Chocolate & Spice Bakery; La Comida; Wing Lei, Botero; Katsuya by Starck; Honey Salt; Prime; Table 10; Mundo; Comme Ça; Top of the World; Aloha Speciaties; Soyo; O Face Doughnuts; Bin 702; Border Grill; Tacos El Gordo; Buddy V’s; Herbs & Rye.

12 thoughts on “EATING LAS VEGAS – The 50 Essential Restaurants – 2014

  1. Will you be publishing this as an e-Book with the detailed write-ups? I’d love to see that. You’ll sell at least one copy.

  2. How about an update on some of the back matter material from the book? Things like best breakfasts, late night places, etc?

  3. John,

    Thanks so much for posting all these reviews. You’ve become the only palate I trust when traveling to Las Vegas.

    Your advice, along with your exquisitely eloquent and effervescent prose has been much appreciated by me and my traveling companions.

    You are also responsible for introducing me (much to the detriment of my waistline and my wallet) to the absolutely gorgeous cuts of dry Riserva beef at Carnevino.


  4. If John ever needs a breakfast or bakery rundown I’m happy to consult or curate the list. I’m also happy to call him out on waiting so long to retry Rose. Rabbit. Lie. It should be top-10 next year, assuming they continue to trend as they are.

  5. In addition to the Honorable Mention, it would have been interesting for a “Posthumous” category, to lend some perspective, noting some of the places that were lost over this past year. Would Valentino have made this list? Pinot Brasserie (they were hitting such stride near the end that it would make an interesting direct comparison vs. db Brasserie)? Perhaps even Circo?

  6. Merci, ELV! Agree with all with one exception…trust me now…are you ready for this…really? The best steakhouse I’ve visited (and on countless occasions) is…are you ready for this…have you ever been there, John? Del Frisco’s on Paradise Road right here in Foodie Heaven, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. I am NOT referring to any other Del Frisco’s across this great Republic…just the one that is ours!
    What say you?

  7. And my trust in uhockey as a commenter is eviscerated with a single post, the only thing they are trending is out of business.

  8. Interesting ‘thoughts’ SuperVegas, but if you forget the ‘show’ I challenge you to name a kitchen outside the big-3 French executing more precise cuisine.

  9. ….I really believe Comme Ca is a top 15 place…Brian Howard is most skillful…Hey, David Myers even flirted with my girlfriend once…no hard feelings…but….top 15…just sayn

  10. Are you well? Haven’t heard from you in a while (typically a good, level, informative, if not amusing, source of dining info for my beloved Vegas for us on the East Coast)

    I thought an expose on the old v new (Sirio closing) is a great topic on how a steadfast pioneer did not adapt – good, bad or indifferent. Whereas the unrelenting approach to a service and food standard has been corrupted by the casual, and perhaps, uneducated and definitely impatient modern consumer.

    Understood they are completely 1000% different yet Sirio is doomed, Giada and Guy thrive across the street.

Comments are closed.