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Desert Companion

Eat this now: Po-boy and burgers

Big Easy po-boy at Streetcar Po-boys
1624 W. Oakey Blvd., 702-901-8788, streetcarpoboysonline.com

I’ve never been to New Orleans, but, lucky for me, the Big Easy’s cuisine has spread to every corner of our country faster than an Emeril Lagasse clone army on turbo fanboats. Las Vegas itself now has several worthwhile Cajun eateries, and you can add Streetcar Po-boys to that list. They’ve got everything from alligator to oyster po-boys, but I recommend the Big Easy. It’s a simple sandwich anchored by crispy gulf shrimp — but the details make the difference. The shrimp is battered in cornmeal and fried to a crunchy golden brown, then piled with shredded lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise. And oh, the bread: Streetcar serves their po-boys on authentic Leidenheimer French baguettes, a pillowy white bread with a micro-thin crust that flakes at the slightest touch. The plate is finished with house-made potato chips and coleslaw. It’s a full meal, but any self-respecting foodie who wants the full immersion will finish with an order of beignets. — Chris Bitonti

 

The Cure at Distill
10820 W. Charleston Blvd., 702-534-1400, distillbar.com

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So-called “signature” burgers are often a letdown — the same old assemblage of beef, cheese and fixings, slammed between a bun and served under the guise of being a house specialty. So I’m confident in saying that the most unusual burger in the city is currently being served at this massive new mega-bar and lounge. The all-American classic begins its makeover with a patty that combines beef with pork for extra fattiness. Soy-marinated onions scream “umami!,” jalapeño jelly adds a sweet and spicy kick, and crispy ribbons of fried parsnips lend a pleasant bitterness. What sounds like a nonsensical mishmash of ingredients will actually make sense when it hits every taste receptor on your tongue. — Debbie Lee

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