A year after the opening of Bazaar Meat, its chef, José Andrés, celebrates the season with some classics—and soon-to-be classics—at one of the most decadent restaurants on the Strip.
The first thing you notice as you enter Bazaar Meat are the pigs. Pale and delicate, they hang from their hind quarters in a brightly lit display case. Their creamy skin arcs down to a dainty snout dangling just over a patch of fake grass. They are darling, these sweet little suckling pigs—and terribly delicious.
The pigs are something of a coup for chef José Andrés’s SLS meat emporium. After years of working to import the three- or four-week-old pata negra Iberian suckling pigs—the same animals used to make the prized jamón hanging above the charcuterie bar—Andrés received his first shipment of 50 this fall, just around the time of Bazaar Meat’s first anniversary. “It is huge,” he says. “It has been many years working on this.”
Slow-cooked in a wood-burning oven until the meat is meltingly tender and the skin crackles, the pigs are served by the quarter or, with 24-hours notice, whole—a decadent centerpiece for a family-style holiday feast.
But man cannot live on swine alone, so the menu boasts nearly 100 different items to be mixed and matched into your ideal meal: steak tartar prepared tableside, caviar fights, updated Reubens on tiny torpedoes of cheese-filled bread, fresh oysters swathed in applewood smoke and traditional Spanish blood sausage topped with fresh uni come together in a deeply funky surf and turf.
The menu refers to the bluefin tuna belly steak and grilled lobster dishes as “meat from the sea,” because, as Andrés says, “Meat is everything. A carrot is good meat. A scallop is good meat.” And speaking of good meat: Bazaar recently received certification to serve Japanese A5 Kobe, the reigning king of the beef world. Order the Kobe eye of the rib—$110 for 4 ounces—and your lusciously marbled and unspeakably juicy steak comes with an authentication ticket, including the animal’s lineage and nose print.
“What I’m giving is the true essence of the goodness of the earth that we celebrate, one meat at a time,” says Andrés. “That’s what we do at Bazaar Meat different than anybody else. And it’s not easy, but because we have good ingredients, I think that we’re achieving some level of success.” It certainly feels that way inside the Philippe Starck–designed dining room, where chrome crocodile heads watch steaks sear over open fames and tableside carts turn dinner into a show. The food may be refined, but the atmosphere is more playful than proper, like an exceedingly cool dinner party where your host serves some of the most sought-after ingredients on the planet.
And if Andrés has his way, you’ll soon find lambs on his list of ungettable gets. “We’re working on it,” the chef says. “A true baby lamb, it changes your life forever.” SLS Las Vegas; 855-761-7757