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Desert Companion

Eat this now: Brioche and ribs

Our favorite recent dishes that have us coming back for seconds

Corn flake-crusted brioche French toast at La Cave

Tucked in a hallway off the buzzing Wynn gaming floor, La Cave is oddly located. But a location that seems like an afterthought starts to feel like a secret when you enter the cellar-like space on a Sunday midmorning — and when you turn the corner and find yourself on a sunny patio overlooking the pool, it becomes a secret you’ll want to keep. Yeah, total hidden brunch spot here. La Cave’s butler-style Sunday brunch buffet (10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., $48) features a flurry of pure small-plate decadence: a trio of unapologetically rich eggs Benedicts, a hearty veal short rib hash, Angus mini-burgers with a smear of rich onion jam — and, yes, saner fare such as fruit salad and a simple plate of heirloom tomatoes and mozzarella. Pace yourself — the servers are cheerfully relentless — and save room for the corn flake-crusted brioche French toast. Crunchy outside, almost gooily tender inside, they stand up courageously to even the most heavy-handed dose of maple syrup (guilty as charged!), and their small-bite size means you won’t feel completely gluttonous asking for another plate. Which you will. — Andrew Kiraly

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Wynn Las Vegas, 702-770-7375,


Garlic pepper ribs at Pan Asian

As far as I’m concerned, these are the very definition of umami. Meaty pork ribs, served on a bed of gently cooked baby bok choy, are caramelized on the outside and tender at the bone. A shower of toasted garlic and freshly ground black peppercorns enhance the savory flavor bomb, making you question everything you think you know about ribs. (Sorry, Kansas City, you are not the only experts on the matter.) It’s a tasty and restrained dish that belies its origins. In fact, it’s better than any Asian dish I’ve ever had on the Strip — no small feat for a take-out joint with $8 lunch specials. — Debbie Lee

2980 Durango Drive #101, 702-629-7464,

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