The Bottom Line
- In-depth coverage of Las Vegas restaurants
- Clear, excellent organization
- Carries the authority of the Michelin brand
- Knowledgeable about celebrity chefs
- No critical reviews
- Limited hotel information
- Introduction offers a general, rather than a culinary, history of Las Vegas
- Only some reviews feature menu specialties
- Book provides front and back fold-out maps. The front one pinpoints casino-hotels and identifies restaurants within each
- Restaurants are organized in lists: alphabetically, by number of stars, cuisine type, area, under $25, and open late
- Each restaurant is reviewed on its own page with a photo plus a description of the ambiance and the cuisine served
- "Categories of comfort" is among the criteria the book covers
- Even the best buffets, which the book terms "all you can eat abbondanzas," are reviewed
- Casino hotels are listed in the back of the book -- but travelers can find more in-depth info on their own online.
Guide Review - Michelin Las Vegas
The red-covered Michelin Las Vegas primarily focuses on Las Vegas restaurants, debuting just a few years after the city transformed itself from a dining desert to a culinary cornucopeia.
Today it's the rare top chef who isn't represented here. Thomas Keller (of French Laundry fame) directs the kitchen at Bouchon in The Venetian; Mario Batali helms B&B Ristorante in the same hotel. Daniel Boulud conceived his Brasserie for Wynn Las Vegas. And Joël Robuchon, considered one of the world's greatest chefs, has two eponymous eateries in the MGM Grand Hotel.
Are these top toques on site every day? No. But the chefs they've trained have perfected the art of turning out dishes as the masters decreed. Still, there are levels of greatness, and that's where Michelin Las Vegas comes in handy.
Sixteen restaurants were honored with at least one Michelin star. The majority (seven) are within MGM Mirage properties. Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand received the book's highest honor, three stars, an accolade only held by 57 other restaurants worldwide.
Since most travelers' wallets and waist lines can't afford a nightly visit to Robuchon's celestial restaurant (at this writing the cost of the prix-fixe menu hovers around $400 per person), Michelin Las Vegas provides comprehensive coverage of many other eateries.
The book is weak, however, in its hotel content. And it fails to cover some older, off-the-Strip, sentimental favorites that have been in business since the days of Liberace (Carluccio's Tivoli Gardens) and the original Rat Pack (Pamplemousse). Back then they were practically the only game in town and a welcome alternative to Vegas' then-ubiquitous $2.99 all-you-can-eat buffets.