Eating Las Vegas
Frequent visitors to Vegas (and you know who you are) should check out a new book called "Eating Las Vegas," the result of a collaboration among three of the city's food writers. That would be the dueling critics from KNPR's biweekly radio show "State of Nevada: Food Talk With Max Jacobson and John Curtas," plus Al Mancini of the alternative weekly CityLife. Before moving to Vegas almost a dozen years ago, Jacobson was the Los Angeles Times' indefatigable restaurant critic on the Orange County and San Fernando Valley beats.
" 'Eating Las Vegas' is the result of three massive egos compromising on their 50 essential restaurants for the city of Las Vegas, not necessarily the 50 best, but the 50 that define Vegas the best," says Jacobson. Choosing the final 50 involved such tense meetings, "we added a veto section in the book so that we could each have the option to veto a restaurant if we didn’t want it to be in the book."
The idea is genius: all three of these very different critics' opinions in one place. Which restaurant are in the top 10? You'll have to buy the book to find out.
Which restaurants got a veto? I can tell you that Origin India, Mix and Cafe Martorano got the boot from one or another of the critics.
Is there a TV show in the works on the lines of "Eberts Presents at the Movies"? So far, no. But do catch "Food Talk" if you can. (Check the schedule of KNPR online.)
The trio's take on the new restaurants in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas casino, including those from José Andrés and David Myers, will have to wait for the next edition. But it is coming.
The book is available online at Amazon and in various Vegas casinos and airports around the country for $12.95.
[Updated: An earlier version of this post mistakenly said the new restaurants were in the Continental casino. The new restaurants are located in the Cosmopolitan casino.]
-- S. Irene Virbila
Cover scan of "Eating Las Vegas" via the publisher