Following an Eater tradition, we asked a group of restaurant critics, journalists, bloggers, and friends of the site to weigh in on the year in food. Their answers to the annual Year in Eater survey will be revealed in several posts. Next up, the dining experts share their top meal in 2019.
Philip Tzeng, food blogger LasVegasFill: My absolute best of the year was Narisawa in Tokyo, the most incredible lunch of my life, but if we’re talking in Vegas, there were two. One was having the honor of witnessing chef Eric Youngsup Kim’s stellar debut as omakase chef at his new location for Kame in May. The other was an epic dinner at Mordeo in early spring highlighted by tomahawk steaks marinated in Red Boat Salt for two weeks and then coated in A5 Wagyu fat by Khai Vu served for one day only through secretburger.
Scott Roeben, Vital Vegas: Joe’s at Forum Shops, far and away. There’s a reason this is one of the most profitable restaurants in Las Vegas. It’s all about the quality and old-school service.
Melanie Lee, Eater Vegas Instagram manager: Two-way tie between Gordon Ramsay Steak and the Momosan Pop-Up at Morimoto LV — two of my favorite dining experiences of all time.
Bob Barnes, Las Vegas writer for Gayot, editorial director and writer for The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional, and copy editor and writer for Vegas Beer Quest: I can’t pick just one. Dinner in the private dining room looking into the kitchen at Delmonico Steakhouse with courses selected by chef Ronnie Rainwater, eight-course chef-selected prix fixe at Partage, truffle/wine pairing at Manzo, Sunday brunch at Lakeside sitting outside enjoying the sound of water and beautiful sights
Andy Wang, contributor, Food & Wine: In Vegas, it had to be Palace Station Oyster Bar on a day when there was magically no line. Highlights included: 1) Talking to friendly strangers, including one who often spends an hour in line to get take-out for his wife. 2) Enjoying a perfect combo pan roast (mild but I like to add lots of Tabasco). 3) Watching another solo diner pick up the check for the couple next to him after talking to them for maybe 10 minutes. He left before they realized what happened. This is such a magical restaurant.
Krista Diamond, Eater Vegas contributor: Big fan of the penne with mezcal pink sauce at Camaradas.
Rob Kachelriess, Las Vegas writer, Thrillist: The private dining room omakase at Sushi Kame is fantastic, but I may have enjoyed the kaiseki menu in the main room even more. Both options provide fresh carefully sourced seafood, authentic A5 wagyu and a few surprises along the way. Chef Eric Kim and his team are doing incredible things with Japanese cuisine while covering every aspect of the dining experience, including cocktails and desserts — two components often overlooked in Asian dining. Want to just grab a seat at the sushi bar and save a few dollars? You can do that too.
Susan Stapleton, editor of Eater Vegas: The Robuchon tribute dinner with chefs Christophe de Lellis and Jimmy Lisnard carrying on the traditions and showcasing the most famous dishes from the culinary legend. Still hands down the best restaurants in Las Vegas, and that meal still sticks with me.