Lomo Completo

Lomo Completo at Rincon de Buenos Aires
Whoa. Seriously. These days lots of places make sandwiches so huge, you'd be crazy to try to down them in one sitting. That's the way I feel about half of the Lomo Completo, a cheesy-beefy-eggy masterpiece found in this humble Argentinean outpost hiding in the neighborhood of Vegas' Chinatown. Super-stacked on top of rustic, crusty pressed bread is steak, thinly sliced ham, melty white cheese, fried eggs, lettuce, tomato and onion. All of the components taste great, particularly the ham, cheese and egg that seem to steal their way into every mouthful. The steak is no joke, juicy, tender filet that easily adds up to twice the size of what you get if you order a petite cut in any steakhouse. It's simply the most filling sandwich we've encountered yet in Vegas, and it's delicious, too.



Pastrami is kind of a big deal 'round here. It might be the single best sandwich stuffing ever created. It's so important, we've tried to make our own version. But it's not easy, and it's very complicated to accurately re-create something you love so much (especially when others are doing it so well.)

But the hunger for pastrami is omnipresent. So we decided to twist it up a little, really make it our own. Thus was born Pigstrami. We grabbed a five-pound bone-in pork shoulder, and dry-brined it for almost three days with an incredibly powerful spice rub of traditional pastrami seasonings: black pepper, coriander seed, garlic, red pepper flake, other stuff. Then we slow-roasted this porktacular creation for six hours, rendering fatty, glossy, beyond-tender meat that falls apart in your fingers and melts spectacularly in your mouth. Plus, tastes like pastrami. (The only signature element we didn't try to incorporate is smokiness, but we're still very happy with the results. Obviously.) Dropped a pile of this decadent goodness on garlic mustard slathered rye, and added some homemade pickled banana peppers for some extra bite and texture.

Sandwich success is a beautiful thing.

The Hangover Burger

The Hangover Burger at Binion's Cafe
Binion's in downtown Las Vegas is one of the true old-school spots left in the city. Anybody who was hanging out downtown before the current hipster redevelopment knows the best place to grab a burger in the area -- and one of the best burgers in Vegas overall -- was always the greasy-wonderful "snack bar" counter in the casino. A couple of years ago, Binion's closed its cozy subterranean coffee shop and expanded this "snack bar" spot, and now it's known as Binion's Cafe. And they're still serving up badass burgers.

This is the only way to upgrade that nice, juicy, straight-from-the-flattop-grill cheeseburger. The Hangover has two big strips of bacon, an egg fried hard in butter, a thick slice of American cheese and a nice ground beef patty on a soft, fresh bun. Toss on lettuce, tomato, pickle and onion served on the side, and Binion's superior French fries make this meal a complete breakfast, no matter the hour. The best burgers are from sketchy little diners. It's a fact.


Spicy Baja Black Bean Burger

Spicy Baja Black Bean Burger at Smashburger
The burgeoning Smashburger chain switched up its vegetarian offerings recently, offering a new black bean patty available as a cow or chicken substitute on any of its sandwiches. It's pretty good stuff, too: a soft, delicate, almost crumbly patty with plenty of flavor. They smash it on the grill and quick-cook it, just like they do with their beef burgers. The obvious choice for this specialized faux burger is the Spicy Baja option, with pepperjack cheese, guacamole, fresh jalapeno, lettuce, tomato and onion. The hot-to-cool balance is particularly effective against the lighter flavor of the black bean burger, resulting in an ultimately satisfying veggie experience.


Salami Sandwich

Salami Sandwich
So one time I was making a salami sandwich at home, and I put the thing right on the counter, no plate, just like this picture here. I left the kitchen for all of 45 seconds and when I returned, the sandwich was gone. But my dog was there. He turned away from me. When I cornered him, I saw small half circles of salami jutting out from around his mouth. He had the whole sandwich in his mouth, hadn't even chomped it at all. It was just resting in there. He was smuggling it.

This is regular old plastic-package, store-bought salami, piled three layers deep on dill rye bread. That's it. Nothing else. I've been eating this since I was a kid. That will probably continue forever, dog smugglers notwithstanding.


Sicilian Tuna

Sicilan Tuna at 'Wichcraft
A few words about 'Wichcraft: Yes, it is created by Tom Colicchio. Yes, it's a Vegas sandwich shop located on the Strip, way way back in the restaurant walk of the MGM Grand, near the pool. Yes, We had lunch there of two sandwiches, a bag of chips, a soda, a beer and a banana for $37. And yes, I felt compelled to revisit 'Wichcraft because I had heard and read some negative things, that it wasn't so great, that maybe the food there had fallen off.

I disagree with that last part. It may be a little spendy, but hey, that's the Strip for you. If you yanked this joint out of MGM and dropped into a Vegas suburb, all the people who say it's not good or it costs too much would be falling over themselves, blogging and Yelping and talking about how great this little gourmet sandwichery is, how the ingredients and breads are wonderful and rustic and innovative. It's a great little neighborhood sandwich shop, it just happens to be in a huge casino resort. Accept it.

This is the 'Wichcraft version of a tuna salad sandwich, way better than the average version. The fish is light, like fluffy cloud of oceanic deliciousness, and there's no sign of glop mixed into the meat to yuckify it. Just lots of tasty fish, a little fennel and olive relish dabbed here and there, with a thin spread of mayo and some sharp lemon on the bottom layer of a soft, chewy baguette. It's quite good, I just wish it had some greens to add a little healthy, vegetably crispness. But overall, this is good stuff, and emblematic of what you'll find at 'Wichcraft.