Archive for the ‘The List’

EATING LAS VEGAS – The 50 Essential Restaurants – Hits the Home Stretch

September 26, 2014 By: John Curtas Category: EATING LAS VEGAS - The 50 Essential Restaurants, The List 3 Comments →

ELV, the man, the myth, the arbiter of all things culinary in Las Vegas, has hit the home stretch in listing the 50 Essential Restaurants® of Las Vegas.

Below are the first 36.

Care to validate, vandalize, vilify, or vet any of his picks for their vacuity?

Or perhaps vouchsafe some of your own volition?

Then please vacate this vellum and veer to the comments section.

But, verily, be sure to verbalize your vehement and venomous vexation with his vaunted, viable, vulpine, veritable, venerable, voluble and voluptuous vichyssoise  without vituperation or verbosity.

Lest we vanquish you.

And you may call me V.

The List:

1. Joël Robuchon

2. Restaurant Guy Savoy

3. L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon

4. Raku/Sweets Raku


Hot Hostesses Celebrate the Top 25 Essential Restaurants of Las Vegas

September 06, 2014 By: John Curtas Category: Chefs, EATING LAS VEGAS - The 50 Essential Restaurants, Hot Hostess Watch, The List 1 Comment →

In honor of us reaching the halfway point of EATING LAS VEGAS – The 50 Essential Restaurants, our staff thought a celebration was in order. And by “celebration” we mean posting more pictures of the incandescently torrid, steamy, loosen-you-collar caliente hostesses we’ve been meeting lately.

Leading off, we have Julia:

…who always greats you with a smile at Rose.Rabbit.Lie.

But RRL is so trés chaud these days, one hot hostess is not enough. That’s why Samantha and Kassidy:

…are always on hand at a second hostess desk to lead you to your table among the jugglers and acrobats that seem to accost you at every turn. (To be fair, many seem to enjoy the festivities here, but we think all the noise just distracts you from Wes Holton’s exceptional food.)

If, like ELV, it’s serenity you seek with your sustenance, then we suggest a seating by Hailey:

…at Chef Johnny Church’s MTO Cafe downtown.

Regardless of your savory or sweet sagaciousness, all four of these gals saucily scan and scamper to safeguard your satisfaction preceding whatever saturnalia you seek.

And for that, we salute them.

The List:

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 Modern Japanese

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

Summer Doldrums

June 09, 2014 By: John Curtas Category: Celebrity Chef Hell, Chefs, Openings, Rant, The List 15 Comments →

It’s not even officially Summer yet and the mercury has already topped 100 degrees for a solid week.

ELV is glad the days are heating up, because that’s the only thing that’s hot in Vegas these days.

Our restaurant scene may seem muy caliente to some — with Daniel Boulud, Guy Fieri, Mathias Merges and Giada What’s-Her-Name all opening new joints in the last two months — but it’s still pretty boring with a capital “B” from where we’re sitting.


Our Favorite Italians – Restaurant Division

December 09, 2013 By: John Curtas Category: Food, Reviews, The List 15 Comments →

As long as we’re thinking like an Italian these days, this might be a good time to point you to ELV’S FAVORITE ITALIAN RESTAURANTS (Las Vegas Division).

The Top Five are, in order:

1. (toss up) Allegro (for Neapolitan cooking at its finest)/B & B Ristorante (for the best pasta in Vegas)

3. Carnevino – possibly the best steakhouse in the country; certainly the best Italian steakhouse in the country.

4. Rao’sItalian-American cooking at its finest

5. Buddy V’s – a worthy newcomer that, like Rao’s, does its Italian-American ancestry proud.

Special Honorable Mention:  Nakamura-Ya – which is technically a Japanese restaurant, but which does pasta better than just about any true Italian restaurant not named one of the above.

Some of you might be wondering about the omissions of perennial favorites Circo and Sirio, to which we can only say: one is closing soon (Circo) and Sirio is now being run exclusively by its hotel’s F & B department, with nary a Maccioni on site, save for an occasional p.r. appearance. None of these developments bodes well for the future of upscale, Italian eats in our humble burg.

Indeed, when considered along with the recent, without-fanfare closing of Valentino at the Venetian, and the shifting fortunes of whatever is going on at Piero Selvaggio’s flagship in Santa Monica, one might conclude that sophisticated Italian cooking is going the way of French haute cuisine in fast becoming a gastronomic artifact, as the great food of this gourmet mecca gets drowned under a sea of red sauce.

Which leads us to:


The Bottom 5 are, in order:


Face it. They’re all terrible and you know it.

Bests and Worsts

June 28, 2013 By: John Curtas Category: Celebrity Chef Hell, Chefs, Food, Openings, Rant, Reviews, The List 20 Comments →

Best Night to Dine Out – Thursday

Worst Night to Dine Out – Saturday

Worst parking – MGM Grand

Worst Valet – MGM Grand

Worst Oversight in Posting This List Yesterday – Yonaka

Best Candidate for Best New Restaurant of 2013 (so far): (toss-up) Yonaka/Hops & Harvest


Just Thought You’d Like to Know…the State of the Vegas Dining Scene

March 25, 2013 By: John Curtas Category: Chefs, Food, Openings, Reviews, The List, Wake 6 Comments →

Picture 1 of 1

As the first quarter careens towards its close, our staff thought it was time to take stock of Las Vegas’s dining scene and share a summary of our recent experiences.

And by “recent experiences” we mean the scenes of the crimes at some recent restaurants….along with the usual gossip, gall and gallivanting for which we are known.

Let’s start with the bad news first, shall we? (more…)

The List

April 29, 2012 By: John Curtas Category: The List 5 Comments →

Think you can keep up with ELV in an eating week?

Or even two of them?

Don’t even try, pilgrim.

The list:


East Ocean Dim Sum




The List

March 21, 2012 By: John Curtas Category: The List 5 Comments →

Has  ELV eaten out more than anyone in the history of Las Vegas?

No doubt about it.


EATING LAS VEGAS Top 10 Announced

November 14, 2011 By: John Curtas Category: Chefs, Critics, Events, Food, Reviews, The List 6 Comments →

The Top 10 Restaurants in Las Vegas, according to EATING LAS VEGAS – The 50 Essential Restaurants are (in alphabetical order):

Bar Masa


Estiatorio Milos

Guy Savoy

Joel Robuchon

L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon

Le Cirque

Michael Mina



The List

September 22, 2011 By: John Curtas Category: The List 4 Comments →

Being a restaurant critic is like being a horse put out to stud; it sounds like a good idea until you have to do it on command all the time.Colman Andrews

Being a restaurant critic is like being a porn star; most schmucks think they would like it and could do it, but wouldn’t and can’t. – ELV

Here’s where we’ve eaten in the past two weeks:

Central (four times)


J & J Szechuan

Flame Kabob

The Barrymore


P. J. Clarke’s



Island Sushi (twice)

Marche Bacchus

Sushi Fever





Comme Ça

Mon Ami Gabi