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Behold! Tom Colicchio's Monster Plywood at the Mirage

Plywood for Tom Colicchio's Heritage Steak at the Mirage.
Plywood for Tom Colicchio's Heritage Steak at the Mirage.

[Photos: Bradley Martin]

While the sign proclaims "New Dreams are Under Construction," visitors to the Mirage will be baffled by the unexplained monolith plywood that dominates the resort's Atrium. Tom Colicchio's Heritage Steak is being created behind the towering barriers and destruction of the former Kokomo's seafood and steak restaurant is well under way.

The Top Chef judge's new concept will feature meats cooked solely on an open flame, either wood-burning ovens or charcoal grills. The 250 seats will reside under the 100-foot-high dome and surrounded by rainforest themed foliage including 60-foot tall palm trees.

With a publicly announced budget of $1,026,651 and 8,163-square-feet of space, the restaurant is pushing for a summer 2013 opening. The prime location is impossible to miss for every guest checking into the Mirage.

Meanwhile, the enormous and mysterious plywood snakes from through the atrium and stops at the entrance to the Japonais restaurant causing a dark visual blot on the horizon for casino guests. A recent, prevalent rumor suggests that Japonais will be the future site of Iron Chef Masahara Morimoto's debut Las Vegas restaurant.

The popular bar that resided at the entrance to Kokomo's currently remains open, although no signs indicate if the name has been changed.

Colicchio operates the sandwich shop 'wichcraft and Craftsteak, both at the MGM Grand. Kokomo's closed on Jan. 14.
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