Picking the Top 50 Las Vegas Restaurants

Given that John Curtas has been chronicling the Las Vegas restaurant scene for two decades via radio (KNPR 88.9 FM), TV (KLAS CBS-TV), print (Las Vegas Weekly) and now the Internet (eatingLV.com), it’s remarkable that it’s taken this long for him to come out with a book like Eating Las Vegas: The 50 Essential Restaurants.

The guide was officially launched on Wednesday at the MGM Grand’s L’atelier (one of the tome’s Top Ten eateries), and given the fact that The Strip is such a critical LA power player destination, the choices will no doubt reverberate out here as well. Curtas wrote the book with fellow food critics Max Jacobson and Al Mancini, who each had veto power and as a group used that privilege seven times.

In an interview with a colleague at the Las Vegas Weekly, Curtas shares a top ten that will definitely make Steve Wynn happy, and also had this to say also about the selection process:

The first 35, maybe even 40 retaurants, were fairly easy to come by. Those last 10 or 12 … we had several lunches … knives were drawn … forks and glasses were slammed down on tables … people got up and stormed away over a few. Then we just compromised. And at the end we all shook hands and remain friends.

Curtas, who pays the bills as an attorney, says he and his colleagues plan to publish the book annually, and that pre-sales have been strong.