yelp_logoMy husband and I went to Vegas for my birthday.   We don’t gamble in Vegas: we eat.  Well, we eat and stay at fancy hotels for non-fancy prices.  But, back to the eating… We find our restaurants by word of Yelp: it’s a free app, using crowd-sourced reviews to give us a good indication of where to eat.  When a restaurant has four and a half stars out of five and over 300 reviews, you can feel confident that you are going to have a good experience.

Where We Ate:
KJ Kitchen, in Chinatown — a 10 minute taxi ride from the Encore Casino, where we were staying — provided us with one of the best Chinese meals we’ve had in years.   Sizzling seafood soup, spicy eggplant and a clay pot of sea bass.  All three dishes were exquisite and I would send any of my Chinese friends there without hesitation.  It’s a non-descript Chinese restaurant with fish tanks in the front.  Service was great and I keep thinking about my meal and suffering with the idea that this restaurant is not in my town.

We waited in line for 45 minutes at The Oyster Bar in the Palace Station Casino.  This is a place that got 4 1/2 stars with 176 reviews.  Incredible!  The casino has an outdated ventilation system, so if you can’t take the smoke, you will not be able to come here.  Also: there are only 17 seats (at a counter) and no reservations are taken.  This means that you will wait unless you are very lucky.  Do not come with a big party — not feasible.  The food is pretty great: we had oysters and a Pan Roast (all sorts of seafood prepared in a delicious, creamy tomoato sauce).  It’s fun to watch the chef prepare the meals right in front of you.  The only other employee is the waitress and these two work their tails off when there’s a line.  Although the food was pretty great, I don’t know that I’d return because I don’t like to wait in line and the smoke was pretty awful.  My clothes smelled afterward.  

We went back to Lotus of Siam for the 2nd time.  This place is in a crappy strip mall in the middle of an industrial waste land off of East Sahara Blvd.  TOTALLY WORTH IT.  This time, there were only two of us and the problem with that is that we can only order so much.  Better to go with a lot of people and get to taste lots of different things.  (4 stars and 476 reviews!) In the past, we’ve ordered a whole sea bass, mee krob, larb, green curry, glass noodle salad — everything was GREAT.  Not like your local “pretty good” Thai establishment, this place serves authentic Thai food.  Not made for gringos.  It’s HOT.  So order beer.  

We would never have found these places without Yelp.  Wherever you go in the US, I would encourage you to peruse the restaurants on this app.  It will make your trip better.  If food is important to you.  Bon appetit!