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Jan 3, 2011 04:02 PM

4 Nights - $1000 (food only) - 2 People... HELP!

I've read some fantastic reviews and opinions on this board, but I am still having trouble putting together a meal plan for my upcoming trip to Vegas. I want to experience many different styles of food.

Here's the deal, there are a few specific meals that I would like to experience. In between those I can live off the $2 All-You-Can-Eat flapjacks at the Riviera. My main issue is that I'm having trouble determining "actual" price for most places. All I know is prices on menus. The six-course at JR reads $180.. but i feel like with wine and tip it's closer to $400, right?

What I've got:
5 days - 4 nights
A foodie wife
About a $1000 food budget

What I want (best possible by budget for each):
A tasting-menu or prix fixe style dinner from a highly rated restuarant
Steak- Dinner
Dinner Buffet
Asian-Dinner (Lotus of Siam?)
Sunday Brunch Buffet
Coffee/Pastry -Breakfast

Is there anyone familiar enough with Vegas eats that would be able to find each of these meals (for two) within my budget? The tasting menu is the real kicker. Never done something as extravegant as what I've read... and would really like to experience it.

Looking for any suggestions. If possible please include location and approximate price for each. Thanks to everyone.

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  1. My best guesses so far:

    A tasting-menu or prix fixe style dinner from a highly rated restuarant - lost on this one (due to price)
    Steak- Dinner (CUT or craftsteak)
    Dinner Buffet (Wynn)
    Asian-Dinner (Lotus of Siam)
    Sunday Brunch Buffet (Bellagio)
    Sushi-Lunch (No idea)
    Burger-Lunch (Burger Bar)
    Coffee/Pastry -Breakfast (No idea... good bakery anyone?)


    1 Reply
    1. re: Beavshak

      For bakery I always head to Payard at the C.Palace.
      Asian go to LOS.

    2. You might consider combining your tasting/prix fixe with you steak dinner by doing the "Cut of the Week" at Charlie Palmer Steak. The price just can't be beat and that includes matching wines. It's a classy and beautiful restaurant nestled deep within the Four Seasons Resort.

      I have really enjoyed Burger Bar for a great selection of burgers and beers.

      Bouchon and Tableau for breakfast/pastry.

      Skip all buffets! Please!

      3355 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV 89109

      Charlie Palmer Steak
      3960 Las Vegas Blvd. South, Las Vegas, NV 89119

      1. Where are you staying? It's not easy to plan around meals in Las Vegas if you're all over the map. If you want to go down and ride the roller coaster and then see the lion cubs and Mandalay Bay, you don't want to have a reservation up on the other end of the strip , etc. You'll never make it. Especially since you're planning out both lunches and dinners. Much better, I think, to have a list of great places with you so that you can find something nearby when you're out and about and get hungry.

        1. Tasting Menu at Highly rated place: SAGE. This is a no brainer for me, but will take up ~$300ish of your budget for 2 people.

          Steak Dinner- Will defer to others, but friends liked Craftsteak
          Buffet - Only tolerable ones I found were Bellagio and Paris.
          Asian Dinner - Raku
          Sunday Brunch Buffet - aren't you already doing a buffet? MoZen does a modified buffet - would strongly consider.
          Sushi Lunch - Um.......
          Burger - Burger Bar
          Coffee/Pastry - Bouchon or Payard or Jean Philippe.

          3355 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV 89109

          3600 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV

          12 Replies
          1. re: uhockey

            Thank you for the info everyone. uhockey... I've been expecting you lol.

            I have to ask, outside of this forum, I have heard/seen very little about Sage. Is this a newer restaurant, or just an under-appreciated one?

            About the buffets... My mother and her husband will be in town for part of the time. I also have family I will be seeing there. The benefit of a buffet is that it will make a large group of people at least marginally happy.. and that's all I need. I would just like to find the best quality and selection possible when doing so.

            And the Tasting Menu is the priority on my list. I just need to have the funds left to be able to cover my other meals that I would like to have. So I would be willing to spend $800 for an out of this world experience if I am able to find great food, in my budget, for the other meals.

            Thanks again everyone

            1. re: Beavshak

              The Buffet at Wynn is certainly impressive. Many stations, well laid out and food that looks delicious. Looks being the operative word.

              Do yourself a favor and sacrifice QUANTITY for QUALITY and go to the Four Seasons Verandah either Saturday or Sunday (those are the only 2 days when they have their buffet) for the brunch buffet. The quality of food is by far better than anything the Wynn pumps out. And if you want to order off the menu that is available also (Huevos Rancheros that I dream about!!!). The only other buffet that I would consider (but I have not been in years) is the Sterling Brunch at Bally's. But again, Verandah, hands down.

              1. re: Beavshak

                I agree with uhockey and climberdoc on a couple of things. Asian…Raku without even thinking. Yes Lotus of Siam is an excellent Thai restaurant. And if you go you will love it. There are very few places where you can get as distinctive and expertly prepared Thai food in all of the US as you can at LOS. But there is something about Raku that is more exciting.

                The Charlie Palmer "Cut of the Week" deal is spectacular. Quality wise CUT/Prime/Carnevino et al are better. However, @ $48pp ($60 with tip) where can you get a quality full dinner INCLUDING wine?

                I am not sure if Sen of Japan is open for lunch but if it is you should go there, period.

                Lotus of Siam
                953 E Sahara Ave Ste A5, Las Vegas, NV 89104

                Sen of Japan
                8480 W Desert Inn Rd F1, Las Vegas, NV

                1. re: Beavshak

                  Huh? $800 for the tasting menu and then you have $200 left in the budget for the rest of the week?

                  1. re: jackattack

                    An exaggeration to show how much I value the opportunity to try a world class tasting menu. Unrealistic considering my other "wants", I know, but... hell I thought it was funny.

                  2. re: Beavshak

                    Just a warning that dealing with a large group of people at a busy buffet can be a real PITA.
                    Went with a big group to Bellagio buffet and there was a mandatory 18% gratuity.
                    I don't begrudge servers their tips, but that seems a bit excessive at a buffet.

                    3600 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV

                    1. re: zippyh

                      That is a great point zippyh, I hadn't considered that at all. I will have to look into gratuity requirements for party sizes at the different buffets before choosing. 18% at a SELF-SERVE establishment is pretty ridiculous. Thank you

                    2. re: Beavshak

                      Sage was named to myriad local and national lists this year - and it is about a year old - and at 1/2 the price of Twist, 1/3 Savoy, and 1/4 Robuchon it is an absolute bargain.

                      For someone on your budget it is my #1 choice in Vegas and probably top 5 nationwide.


                      1. re: uhockey

                        Beavshak's mom chiming in! We do have a car, I sort of still know my way around, and we are not tied to the strip. Here is what we have planned so far:

                        Dinner 1: Charlie Parker Steakhouse - cut of the week
                        Dinner 2: Sage - signature menu
                        Dinner 3: Raku Grill - kaiseki 10 course
                        Dinner 4: TBD - need a good pre-show option

                        Breakfast 1: MoZen brunch
                        Breakast 2: Wynn or Bellagio brunch buffet
                        Breakfast 3: Bouchon

                        Late night snack possibilities - Fremont St (aloho hawaiian food), Peppermill (I spent quite a few nights there in my younger days snacking on nuts and drinking strawberry daiquiris). Where is that pizza place hidden down the hallway in some hotel?

                        Hubs and I are having Friday lunch at Rosemary's, but haven't nailed down any other lunches (we may be too full!). I grew up in Vegas (lived there 24 years), we moved when my son was 1 and he has been back once when he was 10. This is his first over 21 trip, so I did look for options where alcohol could be added on reasonably. :) We all love a variety of excellent foods be they neighborhood pub or fine dining. Any comments on our lineup so far?

                        3355 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV 89109

                        3600 Las Vegas Blvd S, Las Vegas, NV

                        1. re: ms_behavin

                          The hidden pizza place is in the Cosmopolitan. I think it was near Scarpetta although I could be mistaken. Look for a hallway with a bunch of records on the walls.

                          (Oh, and it's Charlie Palmer, not the sax player.)

                          1. re: ms_behavin

                            A. I want you to adopt me. :)

                            B. Try Bachi Burger for your other lunch. I posted another review and photos here:

                            C. Best late night place in town... the coffee shop at Jerry's Nugget Casino on Las Vegas Blvd just north of downtown. Unbelievable dessert selection.


                            Bachi Burger
                            Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV

                            1. re: shamu613

                              Funny....sorry, with 2 of my own and 3 step kids, and 3 grandkids (so far) I think we are done. :)

                              We couldn't get the tasting menu at Raku. Any advice on dishes to order?

                              Got Bachi Burger added to the lunch list. Looking forward to Charlie Palmer tonight and Rosemary's tomorrow for lunch.

                              Bachi Burger
                              Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV

                    3. promise us that for your pastry option you will do bouchon