Rao's on the Grill at Caesars Palace during the 2013 Vegas Uncork'd by Bon Appétit. The 2014 feasting sizzles from May 7 through 11. (Isaac Brekken for Bon Appétit)
PREMIERE PLATES: There was a day, in the past, when going to Las Vegas did not mean food recommendations. Okay, long past, it is true, but your sweet-on-Sin City friends would give you all sorts of tips not involving your three squares a day. Stay at this hotel, swim in this pool, say hello to this one blackjack dealer at this one casino, admire the flamingos at The Flamingo, catch this stage show over at the Trop. Food, though, anywhere along the Strip? Or downtown? Wellllll. Yeah. Your pal might tell you to eat the famous shrimp cocktail at the Golden Gate, the oldest casino in town, or catch a cheapo buffet. But exquisite, top-mark dining was not a Vegas thing even a few decades back. But how things change, right? You totally knew that would be the next thing we'd say. LV's culinary scene exploded, like so many fountains at Bellagio, and now there isn't enough time to try out the offerings from the many, many star chefs who call the city home. But one excellent way? Find a food festival. A major, demo-packed, four- or five-day extravaganza that rounds up the best of the city. And one of the biggies in this sphere? Vegas Uncork'd by Bon Appetit.
MAY 7-11: There are several events festooning the 2014 outing like The Night Market: East Meets West at The Venetian, Burgers, Beers, and Boozy Shakes with Mario Batali, and Michael Mina's Pig Roast and Beer Garden. Gordon Ramsay and Nobu Matsuhisa are two more of the marquee names on the savory sprawl of a foodie spectacular, and one of the best bits is you can buy those tickets a la carte. Nope, you don't need to purchase for the whole five-day run, just dip into the thing you want to do the most. But you'll probably want to do a lot. We suppose the pendulum has no swung the other way: Once there weren't enough food recs to make in Sin City, now the food recs are more than plentiful. Call it a lucky turn of events.