Sparrow + Wolf
Hearth Baked Bread – Aged Umami Butter, Sea Salt
Riverence Steelhead Trout “Chips & Dip” – Smoked Trout Roe, Yuzu Crème Fraiche, Kennebec Potato Chips
Foie Gras and Chicken Liver Mousse – Dried Orange Peel, Shallot Jam, Grilled Sourdough
Foie Gras – Sugar Brulee, Melba Toast, Rum, Figs, Miso
Roasted Bone Marrow – Compressed Pineapple, Seven Chili & Roasted Peanut Chutney
Osso Buco Tortellini – Causa, Brown Butter, Lemon, Aji Amarillo
Wood Grilled Spanish Octopus – Chili Lime Vinaigrette, Crunchy Garlic
Olive Oil Poached California Shrimp – Thai Curry Toast
Japanese Sweet Potato – Salted Plum Crème Fraiche, Crispy Lap Cheong
Blo Nardini Amaro
Pluot Plums in Red Wine – Vanilla Yuzu Ice Cream, Crispy Crepe
Black Sesame Crullers – Kabocha Puree, Coconut Glaze, Butter Crunch
Caramelized Honey Toast – Pineapple, Orange Julius Ice Cream
Coconut-Kaffir Panna Cotta – Honey-Lime Tuile, Compressed Cherries
Recently told by two Casino Chefs that they were under orders to make their Food more “#instagramworthy,” there is no doubt Las Vegas most interesting cooking is being offered Off Strip, and with several new plates Sparrow + Wolf continued to show that substance matters more than style on Wednesday evening.
Now firmly entrenched near the top of Las Vegas’ dining hierarchy for almost 30 months, pre-opening hyperbole realized shortly after ironing out expected early issues, it was as a party of three that the Restaurant was found quiet around 6:30pm, the situation soon to change as both bar and dining room were filled just shy of capacity by eight.
Greeted by GM John Anthony shortly after seating, his leadership of a youthful front of house evident in the room’s flow and the way plates are described, it was with Chef Brian Howard on vacation that cooking was left to Alec Paki and Anthony La Mantia, though in credit to Brian those unaware of his absence would have never guessed.
Described as offering “American Cookery,” but absorbing the influences of Las Vegas’ Chinatown without feeling like ‘fusion,’ it is with housemade Bread that all tables should consider getting started, the aggressive use of Sesame bolstered by Butter that tastes like Cheese and that same sort of umami-amplification found in “Chips & Dip” where Fish Rillettes are complimented by Roe and Crème Fraiche.
Reminiscing next of Sparrow + Wolf’s 2018 targeting by vegans with two types of Foie Gras, the daily preparation featuring three seared ounces beneath caramelized Sugar and boozy Figs, it is from the mind of one of the kitchen’s youths that Mousse comes in the form of a landscape, sharp sours and sweetened Shallots each contributing such that no two bites are quite the same.
Serving portions best measured as “medium plates,” IE sharable by two to three but also appropriate for solos, all but those with a particular fondness for Marrow will likely wish to share four roasted Bones topped in Pineapple amidst thick and sticky Peanut Sauce, each bite predictably rich but not too spicy while “Osso Buco Tortellini” places Potato-filled pockets in a Peruvian-influenced Butter Sauce topped by spoon-tender Meat.
Changing up the Octopus, and offering a good portion of charred Tentacles for just $18, it was only Sparrow + Wolf’s “California Shrimp” that came up short amongst new items, the buttered Curry Toast divine on its own and better dipped in Broth while the Crustaceans themselves were enjoyable but sort of just “there” as opposed to being incorporated into the plate.
Not passing up Sin City’s best Side Dish, Brian’s Japanese Sweet Potato with Umeboshi on this night offered with housemade Chinese Sausage on the side for a guest that does not eat Pork, it was after a complimentary glass of minty Amaro that Dessert got started, first with poached Pluots in the form of an adult Sundae followed by equally mature Donuts that eat light in terms of texture as well as sweetness.
Literally putting “the Lime in the Coconut” next, Sparrow + Wolf’s Panna Cotta the sort that will stick-a-spoon-up-straight without feeling heavy, it was while remarking on strength of the Restaurant’s Pastry program that the pièce de résistance arrived, a thick slice of housemade Brioche on this evening served beneath an enormous scoop of Orange Julius Ice Cream with Caramelized Pineapple to protect it from melting.
FIVE STARS: Never shy to share its opinion, and hot out the gate with no signs of slowing, Sparrow + Wolf has earned a reputation as one of Las Vegas’ best restaurants regardless of location, a willingness to change menu items frequently making each visit special while both front of house and kitchen continue to execute at a very high level.
RECOMMENDED: Hearth Baked Bread, Foie Gras and Chicken Liver Mousse, Roasted Bone Marrow, Osso Buco Tortellini, Japanese Sweet Potato, Black Sesame Crullers, Caramelized Honey Toast.
AVOID: The Olive Oil Poached Shrimp seems as though it would be better as a Tartare, though the Bread and Broth are exquisite.
TIP: Sparrow + Wolf’s PDR comfortably seats twenty at separate or communal tables, with menus fully customizable to customer preference. Call 702-790-2147 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for details as holiday dates are filling in advance.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor.