When the pandemic subsides and Las Vegas hits the stage again, Restaurant Week will return this year – but with a few changes.
Three Square Food Bank has long used the annual event, the 14th iteration of which begins Monday and runs through June 18, as its primary source of funding to help food insecure people in southern Nevada. Since its inception, Restaurant Week has consumed the equivalent of more than 5.5 million meals. But the organization has postponed this year’s event to also support local restaurants that have faced operating restrictions first and now a labor shortage.
During restaurant week, participating restaurants – nearly 200 this year – design specific menus and typically set aside $ 4 to $ 6 for each menu sold to the blackboard. This year that amount was changed to $ 1 with the restaurants keeping the balance. Additionally, this year’s event has take-away options, and instead of having to offer a three-course meal, companies can choose a specialty menu or just take-away.
Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab in the Forum Shops at Caesars has participated in Restaurant Week from the start. Managing Partner Dave Quillen said the reason was the important role the chalkboard plays in the community.
“It’s so community-based that it’s almost illogical not to do it,” he said. “It’s so important to just be a part of it and help an organization that does so much for families in need and to be able to help children at school lunches to have healthy meals in the summer too.”
This year Joe’s is offering a menu of a BLT Wedge Salad or Joe’s Chopped Salad, followed by grilled Alaskan halibut with peas and charred lemon vinaigrette or an 8-ounce filet mignon with Jennie’s mashed potatoes and broccolini, topped off with blueberry or key lime pie for 60 dollars.
Quillen said that this year’s menu, as in the past, is a mix of seasonal or specialty dishes like halibut and specialties like salads and pies. The signatures are usually the most popular.
“We’re selling more of these meals, so hopefully we can donate more to Three Square,” he said.
In the early years, Quillen said, the event was a way to get new customers, but it evolved to primarily interest regulars, many of whom are from the industry.
“We see more familiar faces – maybe people we only see once a year, but that’s what they come for,” he said. “We are very lucky. It’s a great way for restaurants in this city to give something back. “
A list of restaurants and menus can be found on restaurantweeklv.org.
Contact Heidi Knapp Rinella at [email protected] Follow @HKRinella on Twitter.