Sometimes it's difficult to write a review for a restaurant that you have been so repeatedly, it's hard to remember your initial reaction to the decor, the lighting, the overall ambiance. If the food is good the first time, you will likely return a second. If it's good the second and third times, you will likely become a regular. I'll admit, the first time we dined at Mesa Grill, it was solely because I was hooked on watching Bobby Flay on Boy Meets Grill. I followed a few of his recipes, and thought we might as well try one of his restaurants.
We regularly visit Vegas because my SO's parents live there. Before I met my SO, I would take regular trips to Vegas with friends. Sometimes 4-5 times a year. For the past several years, we have been dining at the Mesa Grill, and each time, it's been outstanding!
The restaurant is a little offensive from the Caesar's Palace casino floor, but what isn't offensive in Vegas? It's bright, it's huge, it's got a giant sign that says MESA and it's right in the middle of the casino - it's really hard to miss. The closest valet/taxi drop off is at the Caesar's Palace Colosseum parking lot, or the Forum Shops if the Colosseum is closed.
I've found the hostesses to be kind of bitchy, like they hate their jobs or something. However, if you can get past that part, the servers are usually over the top nice. Your entire group has to be there to be seated, and even with a reservation, there's usually a 15-20 minute wait. I hate that. But now I plan for it. If only they could get this part of the process fixed... If you are dining with a large group you are required to secure the reservation with a credit card. If anyone from your group doesn't show, there is a $50 per person charge for anyone not present. Seriously? Ugh. It's Vegas. People get drunk and pass out. Come on now! So update your reservation if you have one!
For starters, they give you a bread basket and we usually devour the jalapeno cheese corn muffin first. It's buttery, really flakey, with just a touch of heat from the jalapenos. One great dish, the Tiger Shrimp with Roasted Garlic Corn Tamale ($16). The Tamales are cooked perfectly, and they are kind of large. You can easily share one as an appetizer. Some dishes we have seen either seasonally, or as specials - The stuffed Squash Blossoms. Squash Blossoms are stuffed with pulled pork and cheese and deep fried in a very light batter, almost like tempura. They are amazing, and if you see them on the menu, don't hesitate, because they may not be there next time!
As for the entrees.. It's so hard to pass up the New Mexican Spice Rubbed Pork Tenderloin ($36) - the recipe is available in Bobby Flay's cookbook, but I've tried, it's just not the same. It's super tender, cooked perfectly. And even if you order it well done, it's still super tender. It's a little spicy, and sweet at the same time. The portion is large, so if you're not starving, it might be worth sharing. During lunch they also serve this pork in a sandwich $16 - The sandwich served with Grilled Red Onion, Arugula Ancho Chile Mayonnaise and Southwestern Fries - It's a cold sandwich, and it's to die for!
New Mexican Spice Rubbed Pork Tenderloin $36
Also, the Chipotle Glazed Bone in Ribeye ($46). I have a friend who ate the entire 22 oz steak, and despite being a big eater, he was stuffed. It's served with Red and Green Chile Sauce, and each bite is phenomenal. I love a ribeye when cooked properly. Again, this entree is definitely good if you can find someone to share with you.
If by chance you have room for dessert, you seriously can't go wrong. Go for the dessert sampler. Then have someone roll you ass out of the restaurant because you won't be able to walk.
If you're not convinced, give it a try for lunch. They don't take reservations during lunchtime, so either go early, or plan to gamble a little while when you're waiting. Hey last time we were waiting, I dropped $20 into a 25 cent slot machine and won $255! Lunch was on me!
3570 Las Vegas Boulevard
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Brunch: Saturday - Sunday 10:30am - 3:00pm
Lunch: Monday - Friday 11:00am - 2:30pm
Dinner: Daily 5:00pm - 11:00pm
I also like to check out Bobby Flay's cookbooks for inspiration and recipes for some of the famous dishes are even available in the books! I've provided links to the ones I own below...