Considered by many to be very expensive dining destination, Las Vegas has recently seen a boom in decadent dishes throughout the Valley that won’t break the bank, each of these plates available at less than $20 and ranging from Las Vegas Boulevard to points East, West, North and South.
Naked City Pizza – “Bacon Candle” with Basil Powder, Olive Oil Powder, Sweet Balsamic, Himalayan Pink Salt, Crusty Bread: A soon-to-be-signature intended as the bread and oil service at Christopher Palmeri’s upcoming Naked City Tavern, the slowly melting pork fat is bolstered by aged balsamic along with a touch of salt, notes of Basil coming through on the end and well utilized both as a starter and to cleanse the palate between plates as the flame burns for up to two hours.
Bacon Candle – Naked City Pizza
Inyo Asian Restaurant – “Smoked Foie Rinds” with Togarashi , Yuzu Honey, Shaved Smoked Foie Gras: Not for the faint of heart, these pig skins from Gregg Fortunato will make believers out of even those not particularly sold pork, the use of creamy liver helping meld sweet heat to smoke with each bite offering a whole lot of crunch.
Smoked Foie Rinds – Inyo Asian
Artisanal Foods Café – “Tre Swine Ye” with Chorizo, Bacon Wrapped Porchetta, Smoked Iberico Ham, Geechie Boy Grits, Poached Egg: Offered only at Brunch, Johnny Church’s ode to Southern breakfast is as good it gets on either side of the Mason-Dixon Line as Chorizo and Smoked Ham enrich buttery Geechie Boy Grits anchored by Bacon-wrapped Porchetta made in house.
Tre Swine Ye – Artisanal Foods
Niu Gu – “Rack of Lamb” with Cumin: Taking a Sichuan Spin on Lamb, the meaty Rack from Chef Jimmy Li’s kitchen is divided tableside with just enough time on the fire to render fat clear without turning the meat from pink. Rich with cumin and a Shaoxing wine and Honey glaze that lightly caramelizes the exterior this is one dish in Chinatown that you do not want to miss.
Rack of Lamb – Niu Gu
Kitchen Table – “Foie Mac Muffin” with Short Rib, English Muffin, Poached Egg, Bearnaise, Foie Gras: One-upping your old man’s breakfast sandwich, Antonio Nunez does not just place a roasted slice of duck liver atop tender Short Ribs and Bearnaise with his ‘Mac Muffin,’ he also soaks the bread itself in pan jus before toasting it and topping the whole thing with a soft-poached egg.
Foie McMuffin – Kitchen Table
Bardot Brasserie – “Oreilles de Cochon” with crispy breaded pig ears, sauce béarnaise: One of the very best ‘bar bites’ on The Strip, those lamenting the loss of Pigs Ears at Therapy are encouraged to stop into Bardot for a look at these crunchy yet tender morsels created by Chef Josh Smith. Served with smooth Bearnaise, each bite is completely devoid of oil with a portion made for sharing, even though you may want to keep them all to yourself.
Oreilles de Cochon – Bardot Brasserie
Table 10 – “Flame Roasted Marrow Bones” with toasted baguette, sea salt: An enormous portion of bones sectioned lengthwise, this $11 plate is presented simply with Sea Salt, oil and chives, but in the expert hands of Chef James Richards the top of the marrow is rendered almost brulee crisp while the layers beneath are rich and creamy, perfect by the spoonful and even better when slathered on bread.
Flame Roasted Bone Marrow – Table 10
Herringbone – “Thai Style Wings” with Cilantro Soy Sauce, Garlic, Chili, Peanut Sauce: Served “Lollipop-style,” these spicy little drumettes are as good as ‘wings’ get, the meat itself moist and tender while the breading clings tight and crispy with a great spice profile complimented by housemade peanut sauce. Perhaps a bit out of place on Geno Bernardo’s Seafood Heavy menu, these meaty bites might make even the most devout pescetarian question his or her beliefs.
Thai Style Wings – Harringbone
Harvest by Roy Ellamar – “Duck Confit Buns” with Brioche Steam Bun, Foie Gras, Pickled Radish, Kumquat Preserve: Potentially the most affordable way to enjoy Foie Gras in Las Vegas, each $6 bao bun features a generous slice of duck liver atop crispy thigh meat from Grimaud Farms with balance provided by house-pickled Radishes and Kumquat jam. Offered two-per order the best bet is a duo for everyone at the table in order to avoid any potential conflicts, envy or theft.
Duck Confit Buns – Harvest
CRAFTkitchen – “Citrus & Crab” with avocado puree, baby lettuce, fingerling chips, champagne vinaigrette: Although Jaret Blinn’s Henderson restaurant offers some of the best pastries and breakfast plates in the city, one of the most unexpectedly impressive dishes on the menu is this sizable salad with big chunks of fresh crab meat atop organic greens with citrus segments and champagne vinaigrette adding sweetness while smashed avocados and fried potatoes dial up the texture by several degrees.
Citrus & Crab – CRAFTkitchen