Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009 | 3:37 p.m.
Greetings and salutations, Vegas epicures.
There's no shortage of action this week. If you haven't been to any of the new restaurants at Encore, such as the Asian bistro Wazuzu, or Sinatra, where chef Theo Schoenegger mans the stoves, the buzz is exciting. For tighter budgets, Frederic Robert makes incredible pastries at Wynn's Sugar and Ice, and the hotel's chocolatier, Lionel Clement, recently won the finals at the World Chocolate Masters competition, sponsored by Callebaut Chocolate.
Up at Red Rock Station casino, meanwhile, their Japanese restaurant, Hachi, is offering a special menu called 38 for under $8. It's a chance to eat the wonderful food of the chef, Linda Rodriguez, without feeling the pinch. Rodriguez cooked at Nobu New York, and is one of the best Japanese chefs in the West. Items to sample include bbq ribs with a hoisin glaze on a bed of crispy noodles, yellowtail sashimi with serrano chili ponzu, and shrimp kushiyaki, broiled on wooden skewers and brushed with a spicy lemon dressing.
Meanwhile, over at the Suncoast, the clubby space that once housed Primo's has morphed into SC Prime, a top-drawer steakhouse. The room hasn't much changed here, but the food has, and definitely for the better. Appetizers such as barbecued shrimp and Louisiana crab cakes embellished with a rich sweet red pepper sauce are just preludes to some of the best steaks and chops in town.
Steaks are dry aged for up to 35 days here, which imparts a depth of flavor hard to find on this side of town. The bone-in rib eye is amazing, served with charred onions, and the rack of lamb, rolled in a light Dijon mustard crumb topping, is virtually faultless.
At first, I was a little wary about visiting Tommy's Pastrami New York Delicatessen, at 193 N. Gibson Rd. in Henderson, because when I called, the voice on the other end of the phone was reluctant to divulge the restaurant's meat source.
I needn't have worried. The sandwiches are delicious in this authentic deli, especially the tender brisket, and they make a terrific chicken matzo ball soup as well. For hours and prices, call 263-4426.
Taza, Henderson's first Indian restaurant, has a bountiful lunch buffet as well as an à la carte menu with north and south Indian specialties. Indian sweets are also made on prem.
The restaurant is located at 9530 S. Eastern Ave. 898-TAZA.
Max Jacobson is the principal food columnist in the Las Vegas Weekly, and a Food and Wine Journalist for Vegas Magazine. He can be reached at 702-990-2454 or [email protected].