Good Vibe, Good Deal at Herbs & Rye

For many years, one of Las Vegas’ quintessential locals joints was an Italian restaurant called the Venetian. The Venetian is long gone, but the same building on West Sahara Avenue now houses Herbs & Rye, which is offering a strong happy hour seven days a week.

This one isn’t just an appetizer deal. It’s half-price on any of three steak dinners! Least expensive of them is an 8-ounce flat iron that’s listed at $26. That means that during happy hour you get this steak for $13. A 9-ounce filet is $34 ($17 after discount) and a 12-ounce Kansas City strip is $29 ($14.50).

These aren’t complete meals, but they aren’t a la carte, either. Dinner comes with the choice of one side dish—mac and cheese, jalapeño creamed corn, mushrooms, garlic mashed, asparagus or tater tots. Also offered at half-off are linguini and clams ($12.50 after discount) and two appetizers ($10 and $11).

How do you play it? The filet is the best steak. Pick your side–mushrooms are strong—and you’re out for $17. If you want to live it up, add a salad wedge for $7 and a glass of red for $10. OK, you’re over $30 now, but it’s a heck of a meal for the price.

The topper? A big window of availability: every day of the week from 5 to 8 p.m., then again from midnight till closing (usually 3 a.m.). Actually, we’re a little late to the party on this one, as the prices were lower and selection was larger about a month ago. I think they were getting bombed and had to adjust, so we can cut ’em a little slack.

Finally, the place is cool. It gets busy late, so it’s a good social play (no video poker here).

The one negative is drink prices. Herbs & Rye has quite the cocktail program, but you’re talking about $9 a pop. Of course, there’s always a move. Right next door is another Vegas institution, Shifty’s Bar, where you can get draft Buds for a buck. Tune up there before dinner and you’re golden.

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