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Desert Companion

Eat this now! Billy's Bar-B-Que and 8 Noodle Bar

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White Thunder sauce

White Thunder sauce

White Thunder sauce at Billy's Bar-B-Que

4115 South Grand Canyon Drive #100, 702-445-7764, billysbbq.vegas

In the world of barbecue sauces, Alabama White is among the more obscure. This regional specialty from the northern reaches of The Cotton State is based on — stay with me now — mayonnaise. To those only familiar with red sauces such as the St. Louis style, this concoction sounds like culinary anathema. But really, think about mayo on a roast beef sandwich — it’s a familiar combo. At the new Billy’s Bar-B-Que off of West Flamingo, it’s called White Thunder, and it mixes the condiment with vinegar and various spices (the namesake owner won’t tell me which). It has some zing, but also a creaminess and goes great on sliced brisket, pulled pork or even chicken. Drizzle a bit on a Heavenly Hog (a bun filled with pork shoulder and cabbage slaw) or a trio of Billy’s smoked meat tacos. Greg Thilmont

 

Pork Belly Bao Bun at 8 Noodle Bar

Red Rock Resort, 702-797-7012

Chef Andy Vu gives the traditional gua bao, or steamed bun, a modern spin at Red Rock’s new wallet-friendly noodle joint. Expect luscious squares of pork belly, shellacked with hoisin glaze and tucked into fluffy steamed pillows of dough — a standard assemblage until the fixings come into play. Black radish, peppery wasabi sprouts, and a sunny dose of yuzu bring life to these rich, pig-stuffed pockets of goodness. It’s the best pan-Asian snack west of Chinatown. Debbie Lee

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