This post is part of an ongoing partnership with The Getaway , the celebrity-guided travel series produced by Food Republic parent company Zero Point Zero Production. This week’s episode, featuring actor Adam Pally in Las Vegas, airs at 9 p.m. EST, Oct. 22, on Esquire Network.
There are cities all over America with great steakhouses: New York, Chicago, Kansas City. Yet, nobody comes close to matching the beef in Las Vegas, which has more steakhouses per square foot on The Strip than any other street in America. With so many beefy selections to choose from, how does a Vegas restaurant stand out? By being new, being unique or both. There are two new contenders to the Vegas Beef Crown — one unique, one new and unique — and they each offer exceptional steaks that set them apart from the rest of the herd. So, who’s the pound-for-pound champ? Let’s get ready to cattle.
The SW Experience at SW Steakhouse inside the Wynn Las Vegas
You know a steakhouse is truly baller if it overlooks something called “The Lake of Dreams.” Chef David Walzog has been serving some of the best steaks in town at SW for years, but the brand-new SW Experience takes the whole thing over the top. Instead of one steak, you get a tasting of five different mini-steaks comprised of beef from all over the world.
So, what are these five magical international cuts? Certified Kobe from Hyogo Prefecture (Japan), Omi from Shiga Prefecture (Japan), A5 Wagyu from Ideue Farm in Kagoshima Prefecture (Japan), Wagyu from Sher Family Ranch (Australia) and Domestic Prime from Greater Omaha Packing Co. (USA). Each comes in a two-ounce portion and the whole tasting costs a whopping $280 (that’s $28 per ounce, folks). But, is it worth it? Quite simply: yes.
While the Kobe is truly special, the Omi is the standout variety. It also happens to be Walzog’s favorite. “I just think it has the right balance between fat and textural muscle,” the chef says. In fact, in comparison to the rich Japanese beef, the Australian and American Prime came off somewhat bland and chewy. It’s not a fair fight, though — the Japanese beef is so heavily marbled you’d think the cows were only fed foie gras. Simply put, this is likely the best collection of beef you’ve ever tasted.
Beef Rib Steak at Bazaar Meat by José Andrés inside the SLS Hotel & Casino
The SLS Las Vegas just opened last month and, like the company’s other properties in LA and Miami, it’s serving a heavy dose of Spanish culinary mastermind José Andrés. Instead of a traditional steakhouse, Andrés loans his special touch with Bazaar Meat, a “wild and wonderful celebration of the carnivorous, in all its forms,” according to the menu. That means beef, pork, lamb, seafood and anything else that would send vegetarians running into their alfalfa-filled panic rooms.
There are Spanish influences all over the menu and the star of the show is a Spanish-style bone-in ribeye grilled over an oak fire that every guest passes as soon as they walk into the dining room. The steak is dry-aged for 21 days and seasoned OG-style – just salt and pepper – before appearing on your plate in glistening slices. It comes from Washugyu Ranch in Lindsay, OR, where Japanese Kuroge Wagyu cattle have been bred with Prime Black Angus cattle to form a super-marbled beef that you literally can’t find anywhere outside the ranch (Washugyu is trademarked and everything).
The results? Incredible. It has the flavor of a tried-and-true Midwestern corn-fed steak, but the marbling synonymous with Japanese beef. That means you get a super-tender, massively tasty hunk of cow. No sauces, no special seasoning rubs. Just the authentic taste of real beef, and lots of it. Like the SW tasting, this stuff doesn’t come cheap. It’s $80 per pound, but worth every penny.
Nevada Cardiology Associates, which may have to work overtime to unclog all the arteries that these two major beef offerings will fill. Book your appointment here.
Food Republic is the media sponsor of The Getaway, with new episodes every Wednesday on the Esquire Network.
Read more about Las Vegas on Food Republic: