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Various Vegas Questions

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Going to Vegas between 25 Oct-31 Oct for a convention and we are staying at TI. My wife is going with me since she has never been there. We love lots of food, but we still try to remain healthy and exercise while eating well. We are slightly on a budget where we can afford 1 or 2 high priced meals (i.e. 75-100/pp), but we were mostly looking for moderately priced meals, whether on the strip or off. After looking through these threads, we have come up with a lot of good idea and are looking for some help on narrowing it down. It would also be good to know which are must-trys from the list as we are unsure about the convention schedule (so we may not be able to get to all of them) and if there are any must-try dishes at these places. In addition, we also need to know whether there are any dress codes to these places that would require bringing a suit/dress with us to Vegas. Anyway, here it goes...

1) Lotus of Siam - Heard this was an absolute must-try for Thai
2) Rosemary's - We won't be renting a car. Is the bus safe to travel on?
3) Mon Ami Gabi - Probably going here for lunch one day
4) Hash House A Go Go - Breakfast one day
5) Fiamma vs. Enoteca San Marco vs. B + B - My wife loves Batali, but she also loves the menu at Fiamma. Any suggestions regarding which of the three?
6) Lawry's Prime Rib - This one is really debatable as there are plenty of strip "deals" and I don't particularly care for steaks as restaurants, but my wife was really interested in this. Any thoughts?
7) Olives - Probably going here for lunch one day
8) Daniel Boulud Brasserie vs. Bartoletta vs. Picasso - We are probably going to choose 1-2 of these and need help deciding between the three.
9) Bellagio vs. Wynn vs. Mandalay Bay - My wife is also a big buffet fan. Me not so much. Any suggestions regarding the three?
10) Pampas Brazillian Steakhouse vs. Todai - This is probably going to be a toss up between us, as my wife hates sushi but likes the seafood. This will probably be sacrificed as we may not have enough time, but I loved Todai last time I was there (I spend way too much on Sushi so the AYCE is great)

Thanks for any help or opinions in advance

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  1. FYI: Lawrys is not a stekhouse. As the name states, it is primarly a prime rib restaurant with only one steak on the menu.

    1. 1) Order from the Issan menu, do not opt for the lunch buffet
      2) bus is safe, however, that'll be a long ride. Transport will eat up much of your night.
      3) i really didn't see what the fuss was about, but others really like it. Sit on the patio, if it's not too windy or cool.
      4) Breakfast is great, however, transportation will be an issue for you.
      6) Lawry's is my sure thing when I'm in the mood for prime rib. Service & food is always consistent.
      8)only have been to DB. Fantastic duck confit
      9) Bellagio and Wynn have the better buffets of the three, Wynn has the prettiest dining area

      Business casual will work at all places you have listed. No suits or dresses needed.

      1. Just returned from our Vegas trip and went to some of the restaurants you ask about.

        Bartalotta was excellent in all regards. food was excellent, We did not order a whole fish but ate several appetizers and the seafood pasta which was the best version of that type of dish I have ever had. If you order a whole fish which looked great at the expense account tables it will change the whole price structure of the meal.

        Olives: This is my favorite lunch spot on the strip. Very good value for what you get. The bread basket and olive spreads are worth the trip. Not blow you away food but good solid Ital/med. food and hefty portions.

        Enoteca San Marco: We just had cichetti type food there. Procuitto, arancini, artchokes etc. Very nice and priced well for the quality. The wine by the glass was obscene and it changed my mind about Mario! The pours were miniscule, and the least expensive red was $13 for a wine that sells for that much for a bottle. In fairness they sell it by 2,4,8 0z pours and the price is stated up front. 4 oz is 2 moderate sized sips. Most of the wines were $20+ for 4 oz. and it was mostly all small unknown producers. It is one thing to sample Gaja barberesco by the glass for $$$. But a Greco de Tufo for $25 for 4 oz. Please Mario! That has been bothering me for a while.

        Cut: Not on your list but best steak experience I have had. I don't know how big an eater you are but 16oz ribeye was plenty for both of us. The sides and apps. were great! Service was very good and restaurant had a sexy hip buzz about it.

        1. 2. Rosemary's. Not worth it without a car. We had a fairly mediocre meal here earlier this year.
          3. Mon Ami Gabi. Not bad, especially for a chain.
          4. Hash House. Not worth it without a car.
          5. Enjoyed every meal we've had at Fiamma. Had one excellent meal at BB and one mediocre meal. I thought Enoteca was overpriced and not that good.
          8. DB has a nice prix fixe for $50 or so before 7pm. I liked the steak frittes. Haven't been to Bartoletta. I thought Picasso wasn't worth the money and they were just kind of coasting on their reputation. I'd much rather go to L'Atelier
          9. I slightly prefer the Bellagio buffet over the Wynn although the Wynn is a much more pleasant room. Never been to MB.
          10. Ick.

          I'd wear a suit or jacket to Picasso but I like to dress nicely.

          1. 1) It is. However, LOS is much better enjoyed with a group of at least 4 people.
            3) Easy Duece or trolley ride. The food is okay, the people watching is great. Better to go near sunset and watch the fountains too.
            2&4) Rent a car for one day to do Rosemary's and Hash House A Go Go. Share a meal at HHAGG. Trust me on this one.
            5) Look at each menu online and then decide which dishes you'd rather eat.
            6) Lawry's is a high end prime rib joint and not at all comparable to the cheap deals offered on prime rib elsewhere.
            9) Las Vegas buffets have degraded to the point where they are only enjoyable at breakfast and Sunday brunch. I'm partial to Bellagio, but Wynn is awfully good too.
            10) Todai... BLAH! PTUI! What a waste of real estate. Their seafood is below average and the sushi is ordinary. Go to Jack In The Box instead and get tacos.

            Andy

            1. Skip Hash House, not worth it. Best place is the Maple Tree on Spring Mountain near Jones if you want a good local breakfast place. Mon Ami Gabi is a fav, great escargot and bread and not that expensive right on the strip. Been to Rosemary's lots of times, I have been disappointed more than satisfied. Do the Wynn buffett, the most classy hotel of all. Love Lawry's, you can get cheaper prime rib anyplace but not with the ambiance they have there. I live here, so we do these places more often. Try the Grand Lux Cafe at the Venetian if you want a great coffee shop type meal. LOS is best with a bunch of people, and don't let the location scare you, it is in a scary strip mall. I think I see the same homeless lady there every time we go.

              1. 1. Lotus is terrific. Go for dinner. Take a cab, and have them call you a cab to get back.
                2. Rosemary's is not worth either the cab far, nor the time you would spend on a bus, in my opinion.
                3. MAG is good for lunch and I echo the recommendation to eat on the patio if possible.
                4. HHAGG is fine, but not, again, worth a bus ride or cab fare. If you have a car, might be worth it, but I also like the Maple Tree a bit better.
                5. I was a bit disappointed with B+B, having eaten at Babbo, but haven't eaten at the other two. If you go to B+B, ask not to be seated in the front room...you look out at the hallway and across to Delmonicos, and it's just not that appealing.
                6. Lawry's is for prime rib, as noted above. If you want steak, I'd look at Cut, BOA, Envy, Craftsteak, but if you want prime rib, Lawry's is a good choice.
                7. Never been to Olives
                8. I'd go to Bouchon over any of these, and I've been to all of them. Picasso is a terrific room and good service, but for me, the food was underwhelming. I enjoyed Bartoletta, but it's pricy. I think DB is not as good as Bouchon.
                9. Buffets--rarely go, but I'd always pick the Wynn, based on what I've heard locally.
                10. Haven't been to either, but if you want good sushi on the strip, with an interesting menu of non-sushi options, I'd go to Okada in the Wynn. There are a lot of meat and other choices that a non-sushi eater will like, the room is very nice, and although it is far from cheap, it's not crazy pricy either.