Michael Mina

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Arrive early, so you can take time to enjoy the Bellagio Conservatory on your way in. One of Las Vegas’ best free attractions, the seasonal display is a feel-good sensory overload that might overshadow a lesser restaurant. Fortunately, Mina and his team pull out all the stops to create a fine-dining experience worthy of such an entrance.

Opening with the resort in 1998 (under the name Aqua), this is the restaurant that introduced a generation of Mina devotees to some of his most classic dishes, including his lobster pot pie and the caviar parfait he created for his wife on their honeymoon. Both are still available. But a generation of Mina’s most talented disciples have run the kitchen in the 23 years since -- each leaving his own mark. Most recently, Chef Raj Dixit has brought new flavors to plate by channeling his passion for sustainability into using lesser-known cuts of every fish, to avoid waste.

This is currently the only eponymous flagship in Mina’s 40-restaurant international empire. And while his various local restaurants were named by a wide variety of our experts, in numerous categories, this was an overwhelming consensus pick when asked to recommend their favorite celebrity chef outpost.

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