Las Vegas Dining With 20 Year Old Sons
We've been to Las Vegas several times before but we are taking our 3 college age sons with us in December (X-mas week) and would love to have an insider's recommendations for dining. Price is not an object but we are seeking fine food with a lovely or fun/hip atmosphere. Formal is fine just not stuffy. We like Italian, steak, french,asian....We are staying at Bellagio but can travel. Choices we are considering are Nine, Mix, Prime, Nove, Tao. Any other suggestions? Thanks in advance!
Nine is terrific. I would go to Mix for drinks, not food; it's fun to see but the food was just okay, IMHO, and overpriced for what it was. Nove has gotten some bad reviews both here on the board and in the local media; you might just want to go to the Playboy Club and skip the restaurant. Other choices might include Fix, right in the Bellagio; fun, high energy, good food. Bouchon is an excellent choice for bistro food; it's in the Venetian. Mon Ami Gabi, in the Paris, is very good food (not as good as Bouchon, I believe) but has the advantage of being across from the Bellagio. Simon in the Hard Rock might also fit the bill: good, fun food and young crowd. If you have a car, Rosemary's is always great; you might also consider taking a ride out to the new Red Rock Resort and checking out their bbque restaurant for lunch (it's called Salt Lick); if you go later, they have a very nice club. I haven't eaten at any of the other restaurants there, but have heard generally positive reviews of the Italian restaurant, the name of which escapes me. For Asian, Okada in the wynn is great (sushi oriented, but not exclusively so).
Prime would be an excellent choice, the setting is everything you've ever heard. There's a reason why they're one of the hardest reservations to get in Vegas. Food matches the view.
Of the Vegas restaurants I've been to, the most fun was Fiamma at MGM. The original is in Soho, they do a great job of bringing that hip, cool atmosphere to Vegas. The ambience is so cool you just relax and soak it in while there. The food was stunning. I expected good but got food on par with the best Vegas has to offer. Steak was great, chicken was great, fish was great, pasta was great(we shared a bit)they pulled it all off and very well.
If you're thinking of going to Mandalay
Little Buddha in the Palms is a neat place.
The Tilted Kilt is a nice Irish Pub in the Rio and the waitresses wear kilts and look nice. Something any 20 YO would like.
Also The Pink Taco in the Hard Rock is fun and the food is good.
Was just in LV and can highly reccomend Bouchon...very nice dinner. If you want a decent spot near Bellagio, Commanders Palace is across the street at the mall adjacent to the Alladin.Ate there recently and it was good, not great and I did feel a bit rushed. Also in the same mall is a sports bar caled Blondies that has pretty decent wings and gives you a nice non slot machine noise spot to unwind.
Are you fans of any of the Star Trek shows? Quark's restaurant at the Star Trek experience (in the Hilton) is a lot of fun: it feels like you're eating on a spaceship. The waitstaff are dressed in Star Trek uniforms and occassionally a Star Trek character will wander past and chat with you.
The food isn't exceptional (skip the jambalaya; the salad hit the spot for me), but if you're a fan of the shows, just reading the menu is hilarious. They present the food in a way that makes it look space-agey. The ribs are served "on fire" (sadly, I didn't order them, so I don't know how good they are,) the onion rings are served stacked on this weird tower thing, and so on.
They also have some outrageous drinks they serve with dry ice so that they smoke. I don't think this would be good for your sons, though, unless they can make the bright, neon blue one (which I think is called the Captain Kirk) without the booze. You might ask.
Also, I recommend the Terrace Pointe Cafe at the Wynn for giant, fluffy pancakes--either the buttermilk or the blueberry stack. (Another chowhound tipped me off about the pancakes--I didn't discover them on my own.) You get to eat in the garden overlooking the pool and the pancakes, I kid you not, are an inch high each (and you get three the size of your plate.) They serve it with whipped butter and a warm carafe of real maple syrup. I don't know where they find the berries for the blueberry stack because they are huge, the size of marbles, but they were plump and juicy. The pancakes will set you back $14.00 or so, but if you love pancakes, this is is a wonderful breakfast spot.
A place I can't personally vouch for is Daniel Boulud Brasserie at the Wynn, which describes itself as "casually elegant." They have a prix fixe menu for $48.00 and I understand that you can see the Lake of Dreams light show there. I discovered this on my last day in Vegas (while I was trying to walk off my pancake breakfast) so didn't get a chance to try it, sadly, but I think it would be a lot of fun.