On the Strip: Michael Mina’s StripSteak

It’s easy for a first-class, fine-dining destination to get lost in the shuffle in a Las Vegas Strip megaresort, most of which are brimming with a variety of elite restaurants. If it’s a steakhouse, the competitive buzz is even more fierce. But Bay Area-based superchef Michael Mina’s StripSteak (Mandalay Bay, 702.632.7200) remains one of the Strip’s most cool and unforgettable steakhouse experiences, even at a resort that boasts one of the most well-established restaurant portfolios in the city.

The sophisticated atmosphere is surpassed only by the creativity on the menu, which offers innovations like five-spice pork belly topped with tempura oysters, a foie gras doughnut with poached pear and roasted bone marrow with chipotle chimichurri to get you ready for prime Angus or wagyu beef from a wood-burning grill. The steak accompaniments alone will have you telling your friends about this place, where black truffle butter or a wasabi-horseradish crust allow you to customize your cut.

Off the Strip: Hatsumi

Dan Krohmer, chef and owner of neighborhood favorite Other Mama, has debuted the next evolution of his appreciation of Japanese cuisine. Hatsumi (1028 Fremont St., 702.268.8939) is the hottest table downtown, specializing in small plates that pair perfectly with cocktails—like pork gyoza, beef tataki and warm mushroom salad—and skewers of meats and vegetables from the robata grill. The smoky flavors imparted into the miso chicken, bacon-wrapped tomato, quail and veal sweetbreads are unlike any other you’ll find in this bustling part of the off-Strip food scene.

#trending: Carson Kitchen

Has it been five years already? With its emphasis on comfort-food favorites created with unexpected twists, Carson Kitchen (124 S. 6th St., 702.473.9523) is one of the most influential eateries in the greater Vegas foodscape. Celebrate this month’s landmark anniversary with CK’s crispy chicken thighs in Alabama white barbecue sauce, cocoa-espresso New York strip steak, broccoli crunch in green goddess dressing, fried green tomatoes with crab ravigote and legendary glazed doughnut bread pudding.