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one week in Vegas... our first time and looking for a few good meals

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Hi everyone. My husband and I will be visiting Vegas for the first time the last week in March aka "spring break". We usually head to Mexico for fish and ceviche on our vacations, but this year it is Las Vegas. We don't go out to dinner a lot in our area because there aren't many good places around us and I can make better food 9 times out of 10. Even if we lived in NYC, Chicago, etc., we wouldn't be people who would normally drop $200-$400 per head on a meal.

We are looking to have a few meals at some nice restaurants. We have absolutely zero interest in Asian or Indian food. I'm thinking primarily steakhouses and Italian...

My thoughts so far are to get reservations at Carnevino, Cut or Delmonico, and Scarpetta. My husband also said today that he wants to do the buffet at the Bellagio as it is supposed to be the best. (???) What are your thoughts on those? Also, how fancy does "fancy" mean when restaurants state that is their dress code? Cocktail dresses for ladies? dresses? A nice shirt and pants? Suits for men or polos and khakis?

Also, do you have any recommendations for less-expensive dinners for the rest of the week? Obviously, we enjoy steaks, Italian, and also Mexican.

Thank you for any input that you guys have!

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  1. As a thirteen year Las Vegas local I would go to the Wicked Spoon Buffet at the Cosmopolitan. How much do you want to spend for your other meals? Also, will you have a car? Are you looking for on the Strip restaurants or are local restaurants acceptable?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Eric

      We are expecting to pay $100/head before drinks/tax/tip at the big-name spots but would prefer closer to $50/head for other places. We won't have a car but don't have an issue with getting cabs or walking where possible. We will consider any place if it is really good as we will likely have to get a cab to get anywhere.

    2. Been to vegas several times, still alot I havnt tried but heres some of my hits. Also stay at the mgm usually so obviously I've eatten there quite a bit.

      Gordon Ramsay's Steak, although I want to try carnevino also still, but I had to try that famous wellington. Probably the best meal I've had from the $135 chefs menu even over L'Atelier and Picasso menus, although L'Atelier there are alot more courses also more $$

      Nobhill Tavern had some really good food there, and some great drinks, was a little let down with some of the apps didnt think the lobster roll/ pulled pork sliders were that great, or the burger. Had the best chicken I have ever eaten (non fried)

      Fiamma in MGM kinda hit and miss I always go my first night for calamari and dinner, shortribs and lobster gnocchi, surf and turf all thumbs up. Sadly for an italian place the meatball/red sauce were an abomination. Some good drinks also.

      I would say do secret pizza in the cosmo just for the experience one day for lunch or something, open late too I believe. The pizza is good too and hanging out at the pool table/lounge area while eatting can be fun.

      As for the dress code you can get away with alot at most places. I think I could dine almost anywhere with a nice collared shirt and dark jeans. Other than maybe like the mansion Joel Robuchon. I think some places would possibly refuse you in say sleevless shirts/tshirts/shorts/flipflops if they say dressy, but its pretty much give me your money take all comers.

      1. You might want to consider Charlie Palmers Cut of the Week; $48 for 3 courses and bottomless wine with the first two courses. We have been several times and have always been pleased. Considered by many to be one of the best deals on the Strip.

        For some up scale Mexican you might consider going to Mundo at the World Center. (Several threads on this board.) If you are going shopping at the Premier Outlet on Grand Central Parkway you might combine both trips as the restaurant is just North of the mall.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Philber

          Thanks so much for that information! I think the Cut of the Week fits perfectly into our budget for the non-expensive dinners while in Vegas.

        2. Forgot to mention that both N9NE Steakhouse and Nove Italiano at the Palms are also offering Prix Fixe menus for $65/pp and $55/pp respectively. Both include bottomless wine.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Philber

            going to check these out as well! Thank you so much.

          2. This is not a celeb chef recommendation. Hugo's Cellar at the Four Queens, on Freemont is a great experience. It is old school. The ladies get a rose and they have a salad cart. The food is solid and the experience is wonderful. The best martinis in Vegas. The wine list is wonderful. Don't be afraid because it is downtown. The best hidden value, in my opinion.

            1. I think most of the Aria restaurants have prix-fixe options. Sage is my favorite restaurant in LV and I think they have $49 and $79 options.

              Scarpetta is delicious -- somehow makes spaghetti and tomato sauce decadent.

              I'd recommend Milos in Cosmopolitan for lunch -- $20 and change lunch deal. At dinner its very expensive