Las Vegas: Best Place in the World for Steak. Period.

Steakhouses of Las Vegas (Photos by Brad A. Johnson)

A waiter rushes through the dining room carrying a steak, and heads instantly turn. Eyes follow. Fingers point. “Did you see that?” a guy at a nearby table says, leaning into the aisle to get a better look.

“There goes another one.” Heads turn again, jaws drop.  Continue reading

The Complicated Return of Chilean Sea Bass

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Chilean sea bass at Chef Morimoto’s Wasabi in Mumbai (photo by Brad A Johnson) 

I’ve fallen off the wagon, and there’s no turning back. For nearly 10 years, I’ve abstained from eating Chilean sea bass. But I recently started up again. It’s so damn delicious! I’d forgotten how uniquely buttery this fish can be. There’s simply nothing else quite like it.

Back in 2002, more than 100 restaurants in Los Angeles banded together and stopped serving Chilean sea bass. Chefs across the country followed suit. Most top chefs in L.A. still won’t touch it. However, the tide seems to be turning. I’ve suddenly been spotting it again on menus around the world. Continue reading

Quick Review: Public Hotel Chicago

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Public Hotel, Chicago (Brad A. Johnson)

Legendary hotelier Ian Schrager (formerly of The Mondrian, The Royalton, Gramercy Park Hotel, etc.) recently took control of Chicago’s aging Ambassador East and transformed it into a budget-conscious hipster hotel called Public. And yes, the Ambassador East has been home to the famed Pump Room restaurant since 1938—and, like it or not, Schrager has completely revamped that, too. Continue reading