Is it possible to escape football when drinking and dining in Las Vegas?
You don’t like how your favorite dining haunts become de facto sports bars for five months a year? I feel your pain. While living in Summerlin, I quickly learned to avoid my go-to Italian joint on Monday nights in the fall, when the inescapable pallor of a flat screen would turn my otherwise dark, relaxing escape into a frat party.
For a city with no pro sports team, those distracting TVs are seemingly everywhere, including places where they compromise atmosphere in hopes of capturing a few extra bucks. Even strip joints started rolling out the big screens in recent years, which, according to my well-placed sources, might be good for Monday night booze sales, but they’re bad for the dancers’, uh, bottom lines. After all, what red-blooded American man wouldn’t look past a nearly naked hottie to see if Calvin Johnson caught that pass?
Still, despite the dining and shopping and nightlife subcultures, Vegas remains a gambling town, and sportsbooks are a huge part of that—with football easily the king. Which is why asking a bar manager to switch just one of 20 screens showing the same three football games to the finals of the U.S. Open tennis tournament is never a good idea. Try it!
Fear not, though, as there are still a few places in town that actually shun the screen. Some of my favorites: Herbs & Rye, Park on Fremont, Sambalatte, Echo & Rig, Velveteen Rabbit and Carson Kitchen. Know of some others? Drop back and pass them my way.
Why does Vice magazine hate Vegas so much?
Easy: Vice hates everything! To that end, it loves to lend space to the kind of self-loathing navel-gazing I admittedly scribbled in my 20s. To keep you from suffering through another link posted by a well-meaning friend, here’s a David Letterman-esque primer on why Vice and just about every other outside media outlet—not to mention every teenager living here—hates Sin City:
- We’ve got nothing but douchebags and hoes.
- It’s a cultural wasteland.
- Tony Hsieh, Guy Fieri and that dude who bought Beauty Bar.
- Hot! Expensive! Strippers!
- Gambling. Casinos. Smoking.
- There’s nothing to do here.
- UNLV sucks.
- Bottle service.
- Sex! Money! Sex! Booze! Sex!
- The high school dropout-turned-$100k-a-year valet parker … What an asshole!