Hot Pastrami

Hot Pastrami at Zoozacrackers
To the short list of spectacular pastrami sandwiches on the Vegas Strip, add this beauty from the underrated Zoozacrackers deli at Wynn. Give it a few extra points because unlike the offerings at imported joints like Canter's and Carnegie, the Zooza crew makes all this stuff in-house: pastrami, corned beef, even the latkes. And it's very steady.

This simple, sublime sandwich comes on some pretty great bread, also baked in the resort. It's soft but firm seedy rye with just enough flavor. The pastrami is very different from those other places, and from what you're used to eating with store-bought meat. It's incredibly tender with zero bites of weird fattiness or gristle, thanks to a very complicated and lengthy cooking process. All the familiar tastes are there, including a subtle smokiness, black pepper, garlic and coriander. It's not overly salty. The flavors are round and smooth, beefier than other pastramis. Great stuff. They tack on some Swiss cheese and let you go at it yourself with the mustard.

Scrumptious bites like these make us continue to hit the Strip for our regular deli fix. It's hard to say this is better than the rest, as it's so different. But for now, there's not another place anywhere in Vegas I'd rather get a pastrami sandwich.


Juicy Lucy

Juicy Lucy at Crossroads at House of Blues
If you watch a lot of food TV, you might be pretty excited about this. The "Juicy Lucy" burger, originated somehow, somewhere, is all over TV whenever I switch to the Food Network or the Travel Channel or the Cheeseburger Channel or what the fuck ever. I've even seen a show where two different versions of this burger battled each other, and were judged by alleged experts. (Okay, maybe I'm jealous. Maybe we like to think there is no greater assessment of burger greatness than what is done right here at allsandwich.) What seems like a simple concept is portrayed as revolutionary through all this hype. The cheese is inside the burger! And armageddon ensues.

Whether or not the Juicy Lucy is a phenomenon that is sweeping our nation, this is the first time I've seen it on a Las Vegas menu actually called a "Juicy Lucy." And it's at an odd place, not because the House of Blues restaurant in Mandalay Bay is kind of a glorified bar and grill, but because it's traditionally been a soul food-inspired eatery which is now swinging toward Mexican food. Confusing, right? And smack in the middle of this mess is this rather basic burger, stuffed full of two different cheeses, overcooked, and dropped on a completely mediocre bun. The only flavor besides melty-gooey-cheesiness comes from the roasted peppers, which only make sense because of this vague new southwestern theme. Things are weird here. This burger isn't weird, but it sure is boring.


Turkey Sandwich

Turkey Sandwich at Bread & Butter
Don't worry: I'm not still eating and blogging turkey sandwiches this far after Thanksgiving. No, this beauty comes to you because Bread & Butter, a new breakfast-lunch-bakery spot in the suburban town of Henderson (yeah, it's all still Vegas) is building quite a buzz. It's known for its sweet stuff and artisan breads, like this soft, fresh, light, perfect roll that somehow falls somewhere between brioche and pretzel. Baking isn't the only thing they do well here ... stuffed inside is house-roasted, shredded turkey, melted swiss, mayo and a tasty veggie relish with bell pepper, red onion, sunflower seeds and a light, refreshing dressing. This kitchen is always working on something new, and we can't wait to try its other sandwich creations.