Mobsters, Russian Food and a Decent Rib Eye

The Mob Museum opens on Valentine’s Day. Things haven’t gone particularly well for Las Vegas’ other mob attraction, the Tropicana’s Mob Experience, where there’s been some legal and financial turmoil. But the biggest problem there was a $40 ticket price. No such problem exists downtown, where a much more friendly $18 price tag has been installed, and it’s discounted to just $10 for locals. I’ve already had a walk-through, and the place is pretty cool.

Other notes from my research for February’s Las Vegas Advisor:

• The great raw-oyster happy hour at P.J. Clarke’s in the Forum Shops at Caesars has gotten even better. For starters, the Saturday exclusion has been lifted, which means you can now get freshly shucked oysters on the half shell for just a buck apiece from 2:45 to 6 p.m. daily. Additionally, there are now three draft-beer selections—Sam Adams, Blue Moon or Coors Light—that are only $3 each during the same hours. Get a dozen oysters and two drafts for $18.

• For another good happy hour, check out Red Square at Mandalay Bay. This one’s simple: Five appetizers and three drinks are $5 each. The appetizers are calamari, popcorn chicken, Kobe beef sliders, salmon blini and beef pelmini (dumplings). The drink choices are Bloody Mary, pineapple-infused vodka and pepper-infused vodka. Red Square is known for its appetizers and these don’t disappoint, with the salmon and sliders taking top honors. Pull up to the ice-topped bar if you can get a seat—this happy hour (4-7 p.m. Mon-Fri and 2-7 on weekends) is always busy.

• If you have friends looking for a room deal, El Cortez has an interesting offer. Book directly and pay for two nights in February or March and get two nights free on a return trip.

• Finally, here’s a cool gambling insta-comp. A group of eight 25-cent video poker machines on the first floor of Fitzgeralds is part of a long-running promotion where you get a comped steak dinner in the Courtyard restaurant for hitting any four-of-a-kind. The steak is a decent rib eye that comes with a soup-and-salad bar and normally goes for $9.99. Not a bad perk for popping the relatively frequent (about 1 in 420 hands) video poker quad. The best schedule in this bank is 8/5 Bonus Poker.



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