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Dec 1, 2009 12:35 PM

NY CH'er off to LV -

Going to Vegas for a whole week and to ring in the new year! -- Meeting up with a bunch of semi-high-roller-friends (not sure what is considered "HIGH-roller") from out of the country that have been "invited" to stay at the Aria and they've invited me. -- Hooray!

They've asked me to book the restaurant rezzies, and I must say...even though I'm from New York, LV is looking like it could really be too much of a good thing. -- Especially to cram it all into 4 nights and 5days. - I've live in NY all my life and I still can't keep up with all the amazing restaurants I still have to try.

My friends are into the more trendy and swankier restaurants. They LOVE Nobu and go there almost every time they're in Vegas. But the NOBU here in NY has just turned me off to it pretty much completely that I know I'm going to be battling to NOT go there this time around.

I'm a huge fan of the more rustic, quaint, "simpler" places with AMAZING and SIMPLE food like the ones you find in the W. Village and Meatpacking district.

While my friends will be spending most of their time at the tables, after all they do have to pay for my room & meals SOMEHOW -- I'm looking for quaint wine bars, gastropubs, enotecas, izakayas, diners, bistros, etc. to pass my time. - Give me a GOOD bottle of wine and a GREAT charcuterie plate... and I'm happy for hours. - OH! And if at all possible, a place where maybe I could meet a great singly guy at one of these places that likes the same things? (OK, that may be asking for too much.)

Also need recommendations on restos for the whole group of us (maybe 15-20 including kids) for dinners as well. -- Italian, Japanese, Steak, New-American, etc.

Thanks in advance for all your help!


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  1. Just remember that the Strip will be closed from the afternoon of December 31 to the morning of January 1 to all but pedestrian traffic. There will be no cabs, buses, motor vehicles, etc. The Strip runs north and south. It will be closed from south of Tropicana to just north of Charelston. In addition, all of the east and west streets will also be closed to the same motor vehciles. This will effect your choice for December 31, 2009 or plan on walking or driving far out of your way to go behind the Strip hotels to park,

    3 Replies
    1. re: Eric

      Most of the 'simpler' places are off strip...not sure if you are willing to travel? If you are, I would check out Vintner Grill and Nora's Wine Bar in Summerlin. Not too far off the strip is a great tapas place, Firefly...over on Paradise. Lotus of Siam is awesome for Thai and an Indian place just opened next door to that called Namaste, which has gotten great reviews but I haven't tried personally yet. On the strip, I really like Nove and N9Ne at the Palms and Boa and Sushi Roku at Caesars for large parties. There are a ton of places over at the Palazzo at the Venetian that you might want to check out as well. Hope that helps!

      1. re: tear it up

        If you're staying at Aria why not give some of the new restaurants in the City Center complex a try?

        Since getting around might be a problem due to the strip being closed off you'd never have to worry about transportation problems. Everything at City Center is within walking distance and there will be plenty of dining choices available at the various hotels as well as at the Crystals shopping area.

      2. re: Eric

        Thank you SO MUCH, Eric - I had no idea. Guess we'll try to stay around our hotel.

      3. But are there ANY "quaint" places on the strip? While my friends play the tables, I was hoping to find a spot to pass the time while enjoying some great wine and delicious smaller bites.

        3 Replies
        1. re: uptwngrl14

          If you like oysters, the oyster bar at Bouchon in the Venezia tower of the Venetian resort opens at 3:00, I think, and it's highly recommended. They do several great wines by the glass and they usually have 5-6 types of oysters daily - along with other small bites.

          1. re: azbirdiemaker

            SeaBlue @MGM Grand also has a $1 oyster happy hour Sun-Fri 5:30-7:30. Yowzah.

            1. re: linguafood

              Thanks for the suggestions, azbirdie & oysters and was planning on Bouchon for at least one meal already. Good to know they have a nice selection of oysters as well.

              Any other cafe or brasserie type places? That are smaller & more quiet? And less "scene-y"?

        2. Hey, I also love a good bottle of wine and a great charcuterie plate - and I'm a single guy who would love to go to a place with those things.

          Shoot me an e-mail. WasHumanToo @ gmail

          1. uptowngirl, as a Vegas resident, I have to say that asking for simple "quaint" food-oriented places on the Strip is like asking for cutting-edge molecular cuisine in Peoria: you're looking in the wrong place. there are no greenmarkets here. embrace swankiness/tackiness: it's what we do here! or take a 10-minute cab to Raku, in Chinatown....

            1. I don't know if you're sick of Daniel Boulud since you're coming from NYC, butone of our favorites for something less formal than Guy Savoy or Joel Robuchon is Daniel Boulud Brasserie at the Wynn. The food is great and there is the signature "pool show" outside. The entrecote (bone-in ribeye) for two for about $100 was tender, juicy, and perfectly charred on the outside. It came with all sorts of accompaniments...split roasted bones filled with marrow, fried chickpea fries, pommes puree, creamed spinach, and an heirloom tomato salad as well as a rich Bearnaise sauce. We were stuffed, and found the price quite reasonable.