When two such shoot-from-the-hip chefs as Christian Dolias and John Courtney team up in a kitchen, the meal is bound to make sparks. For their Raise the Bar pop-up dinner, the powder keg is Old School Brewing Company ($50, 8410 W. Desert Inn Rd., 702-273-9782) on May 27. The five-course meal kicks off with dueling amuse-bouches, then alternating dishes from each chef. Dolias will come out of the gate with his take on fish and chips, but instead of cod, he’s going amphibious, using frog legs in a beer batter, served with dill’d hand cut chips. The third course plays around with Buffalo flavors in Duck’cetta, a duck confit roulade flavored with your favorite wing spice and gorgonzola. Courtney helms the second course with Heads & Tails: crispy tails and smoked porchetta di testa (that’s the fancy Italian name of a stuffed roulade of pig’s head) along with Johnny cakes, charred scallion cream and vanilla porter. The final dish, Hot Hen & Crumpets, is the heartiest, featuring spiced crispy hen and sorghum. And since this dinner is popping up in a brewpub, an additional $10 pairs your meal with six four-ounce samples.
Speaking of bars, the restaurant that set the standard for what we enjoy as chicken wings today, Anchor Bar, has announced a June 15 opening at Grand Canal Shoppes. Americans eat 1.25 billion chicken wings during the Super Bowl alone. We eat them most often in Anchor Bar’s image: tossed in a spicy hot sauce named for the spot’s hometown of Buffalo, served with celery and blue cheese dressing. And that’s what they’re bringing here. The Las Vegas outpost will offer the original winged favorites, as well as boneless wings, beef on weck and chicken sandwiches. The only-in-Vegas touch? An exclusive Anchor Bar Ice Cream Bar from local gelaterio Luciano Pellegrini, presumably to cool you down from all those hot wings.
Also throughout June, prepare yourself to Eat (RED) Drink (RED) Save Lives at various restaurants on the Strip. It’s an effort to raise money to fight AIDS and provide HIV/AIDS medication throughout the world to those who need it most. As Mario Batali is an ambassador to the cause, all of his spots, as well as those at SLS, including Cleo, Bazaar Meat and Katsuya are “turning (RED),” offering special dishes, drinks and tasting menus with 100 percent of proceeds going to the Global Fund. For more information and a full list of participating restaurants, visit eatREDdrinkRED.org.