Joel’s Chophouse at Ahern Hotel Offering Quality Steaks at Off-Strip Prices
There is certainly no shortage of steakhouses in Las Vegas and you’ll pay a large price of admission at those with a great view of the city. But at the new Joel’s Chophouse at the Ahern Hotel you can enjoy magnificent panoramic views of the north end of the Vegas Strip while partaking in ultra high end cuisine.
The aforementioned delightful view is compliments of floor-to-ceiling windows on one end of the dining room, and the rest of the room exudes class and luxury that is best described as old school chic mixed with contemporary stylings. There is an LED screen above the bar that perpetually changes to dreamy, melodic patterns such as flames to remind you of what’s taking place in the kitchen; white pillars; luxuriously padded chairs in a rich dark blue hue; a ceiling with interwoven chevron shapes; a wall with the wine selection under glass; private room; and a small stage for occasional live performances.
Chef Joel Ott
At the helm in the kitchen is VP of Culinary and Executive Chef Joel Ott. The talented and well-trained chef moved from Ohio to Las Vegas at the age of 19 to attend culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu. He then subsequently worked for many high-end restaurants and premier properties such as the Loews Resort at Lake Las Vegas, the M Resort Spa Casino, and Koi Restaurant at Planet Hollywood. Chef Joel then made his mark on the Las Vegas Strip spending seven years at the Wynn’s Allegro and Sinatra restaurants and three years as Chef de Cuisine for the Italian restaurant at the Four Seasons as well as at Le Cirque, Circo, Picasso by Julian Serrano, and Todd English’s Olives — all at the Bellagio. Chef Joel is ably assisted by Sous Chef Jose Garcia.
Lobster Bisque is the only soup offered, and for good reason, as it is done right here. Your bowl arrives filled with a generous 2 oz serving of butter-poached Maine lobster and your server then pours a bisque of fine sherry wine and crème fraiche. The Baby Iceberg Wedge here, unlike most bleu cheese versions, is dressed with a delicious gorgonzola buttermilk dressing and also comes with Nueske’s smoked bacon and cherry tomato. The Pasta section of the menu is well-represented by the Chanterelle Scallop Risotto with golden chanterelle, lemon butter sauce and Fresno chili and on the night of our visit, we got to celebrate the winter truffle season with generous shavings of winter truffle shaved onto the risotto.
Of course, you likely came here for the steaks, and you won’t be disappointed with the cuts nor portion sizes of the 20 oz 30-day Dry-aged Bone-in Ribeye, 12 oz Bone-in Filet Mignon, 14 oz Prime NY Strip, 8 or 12 oz Rib Cap ‘spinalis’ and 14 oz Westholme Australian Wagyu Top Sirloin. All are seared with Chef Joel’s blend of garlic & herbs with Himalayan salt, basted with wagyu beef tallow and infused aromatics and finished with flaky sea salt and red wine bordelaise. Several accompaniments include Truffle Hennessey Cream Sauce, 12 oz lobster tail, seared scallops, bourbon peppercorn and Rossini Flambe—seared foie gras kissed by flaming Hennessy served with a truffle Hennessey cream sauce.
Be sure not to skip the sides, for they are excellent options, such as roasted oyster mushrooms with Marcona almonds and a roasted pepper puree and creamed spinach with black truffle bechamel and a 62° soft poached egg.
Upon completion of your dinner your server will wheel out a digestif trolley full of after dinner drinks such as Graham’s 40-year Tawny Port, Amaro, Scotch, cognac, Armagnac and amber ice wine. An additional cart is utilized for the tableside dessert of Chocolate Mousse made up of vanilla sponge cake, raspberry glaze, Amaretto cookie crumble, chocolate sauce, whipped cream and meringue served inside an edible chocolate bowl.
If, like me, you enjoy fine whiskey to accompany fine cuts of beef, you’ll not be disappointed in the bourbon/whiskey list with gems from around the world. The expansive list includes the Scotch Macallan 18 and 25, the Japanese Nikka Coffey Grain and American bourbons like Old Forester 1920 Prohibition style and John Bowman Pioneer Spirit Single Batch. If wine is more your style, there’s plenty to choose from, with quality varietals mainly from Italy, France and California like the 2022 Twomey Sauvignon Blanc from Napa and Sonoma County. Several smoked old fashioned cocktails are offered, including the Maple Bacon Old Fashioned with bacon-infused Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Angostura Bitters and maple syrup.
In addition to the reasonably priced menu, there are several specials to save you even more money. The best deal has to be the Tomahawk Tuesday, which gets you a humongous 44-oz Westholme Australian Wagyu Tomahawk Ribeye served with buttery mashed potatoes and a glass of house red wine for $149 (more than $100 savings). Surf & Turf Wednesday offers a house salad, 8 oz filet and 6 oz lobster tail served with mashed potatoes and asparagus for $89. For $99 on Thursdays the deal is a huge 20 oz ribeye with truffle sauce, lobster bisque, confit potatoes and the Decadent Chocolate Dessert. The Monster Lobster Fridays, also priced at $99, offers a generous 2.5 lb live whole lobster served with Spanish Caesar salad, pommes frites and baked Alaska dessert. Show up with your best friend or date for the Date Night Saturday for two people priced at $199 for a feast including a 12 oz bone-in filet, Queen’s New Zealand Salmon, lobster mac & cheese, sauteed asparagus with Bearnaise sauce and tableside chocolate mousse.
Joel’s Chophouse is offering a fine dining option a short jaunt from the Vegas Strip at reasonable prices with plenty of deals and free parking. Hours are Tuesday-Sunday from 5-10 p.m.
For more details and the full menus, click here.
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Bob Barnes began his food and beverage writing career in 1998 as Regional Correspondent for Celebrator Beer News and wrote the Nevada Beer Nuggets column from 1998-2019. He was Editorial Director of The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional from 2012-2021 and has covered Las Vegas for Gayot since 2010. He continues to contribute to Gayot, writing the Gayot Las Vegas Restaurant News, features on new restaurants, and beer and spirit reviews. He also writes regularly for Off The Strip, The Vegas Voice, Neon Feast, and Las Vegas Magazine.