Press release: LAS VEGAS – When Circa Resort & Casino opens its doors in Downtown Las Vegas December 2020, it will unveil an eclectic restaurant lineup featuring five original concepts from a collection of chefs and proprietors revered both locally and around the world.
Curated by developer and CEO Derek Stevens, each offering will deliver something new to the city as part of Circa Resort & Casino:
• Saginaw’s Delicatessen from Detroit restaurateur Paul Saginaw, marking the first new restaurant outside Michigan from the masterminds behind Ann Arbor’s famed Zingerman’s;
• Barry’s Downtown Prime, the first Downtown venture from Chef Barry S. Dakake;
• Victory Burger & Wings Co. from American Coney Island’s Chris Sotiropoulos and Grace Keros, the first new concept from the brand’s founding family in more than a century;
• 8 East, the first pan-Asian restaurant from Chef Dan Coughlin;
• Project BBQ by Chef Rex Bernales, the first permanent food truck and Carolina barbecue joint on the Fremont Street Experience.
“While each owner brings a diverse background to Circa, they are united by the common thread of having a passion for customer service and the Downtown Las Vegas community,” said Stevens. “In addition to incredible food, they will all deliver that spirit of fun and community that is integral to the Circa experience.”
Circa’s restaurant lineup will include the following:
Conceptualized by Michigan legend Paul Saginaw, Saginaw’s Delicatessen will be his first restaurant outside of the region. A lifelong fan of Downtown Las Vegas, Saginaw has collaborated with Stevens to introduce a family-style deli touting sandwiches “so big, you’ll need two hands to eat them.”
Saginaw is known worldwide for the iconic Zingerman’s Deli – an Ann Arbor institution he opened with partner Ari Weinzweig in 1982 – that’s consistently ranked among the world’s best sandwich joints. A college-aged Stevens used to line up early for the restaurant’s buzzed-about sandwiches, and later opened the Coffee Stand at the D Las Vegas, proudly serving Zingerman’s Coffee.
Saginaw’s menu will include his famous Reuben and several more of the creative sandwiches for which he’s known. Traditional delicatessen favorites will round out the menu, including matzo ball soup, onion rings, salads, latkes, chopped liver, breakfast specialties and more.
Barry’s Downtown Prime
Vintage glamour and hospitality meet modern innovation and design at Barry’s Downtown Prime, the new steakhouse concept from Chef Barry S. Dakake and Make It Happen Hospitality. Barry’s Downtown Prime will deliver the city’s finest steaks and seafood, fresh tableside preparations, creative cocktails and a memorable service experience.
Evoking a throwback vibe worthy of Downtown’s legacy, Barry’s will bring guests back to the classic cool of the 50s and 60s when great music and sounds of clinking martini glasses filled the air, the chef greeted you at the table, the bartender knew your favorite cocktail and everyone felt like a VIP.
Barry’s Downtown Prime was developed by 980 Restaurant Consulting partners Barry S. Dakake and Yassine Lyoubi, which merged with Marco Cicione and Donnie Rihn to create Make It Happen Hospitality. Boasting longstanding careers in the Las Vegas food & beverage scene, Chef Dakake was at the helm for restaurants N9NE Steakhouse and Scotch 80 Prime for nearly two decades. Lyoubi served as general manager for N9NE Steakhouse and Bazaar Meat by José Andrés, and most recently held the title of director of fine dining at the Palms Resort & Casino.
Victory Burger & Wings Co.
Overlooking Circa’s sportsbook, Victory Burger & Wings Co. will be an all-star sports bar experience. Developed by Chris Sotiropoulos and Grace Keros – third-generation owners of Detroit’s 102-year-old American Coney Island – the menu will offer simple items, executed flawlessly. Gameday staples will include five specialty burgers, wings and appetizers. Following the same business model that made American Coney Island successful for more than a century, the new Circa concept will feature fresh, high-quality ingredients, made to order, in a fun and lively atmosphere.
The star of the show will be the Victory Burger, featuring a ½-pound patty made with a proprietary blend of Angus beef, short rib and brisket topped with a secret sauce. In an homage to the Midwest, Victory also will serve a twist on the beloved Michigan Olive Burger. Crispy and meaty, diners will love the hearty portions of wings and signature dipping sauces, and no meal will be complete without Victory fries and a pour from its excellent beer selection.
Guests can watch the sports action via TVs throughout the space in addition to a prime view of the massive three-story screen in Circa’s sportsbook. The venue will have its own radio booth, where fans might spot their favorite sports talk show conducting a broadcast on gameday.
Inspired by metropolitan Asian food markets, 8 East will offer Chef Dan Coughlin’s creative takes on pan-Asian cuisine. Spanning Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Korean and Thai dishes, 8 East will have a hip, high-energy atmosphere punctuated by great music and communal dining.
A key player in sparking the Downtown food movement with hotspot Le Thai, Coughlin will introduce new fusion dishes and techniques at 8 East that he’s been keeping in “the vault” – previously tested both at his Thai restaurant and at home for family and friends. His menu will be full of shareable dishes such as Coughlin’s GaPow basil chicken pot stickers, dumplings, wontons, skewers and steaks. Each will be served with signature Chinese, Szechuan, Shangdu and Thai sauces, amongst others, offering unique flavor combinations for guests to explore.
A beverage program curated by Sonny Ahuja and Don Welch of Downtown Las Vegas’ Bin 702 will feature rare Japanese whiskies and sakes, in addition to specialty cocktails.
Serving up a Southern festival of gourmet smoked meats, Project BBQ at Circa will be Fremont Street Experience’s only permanent food truck and its first Carolina BBQ joint.
Conceptualized by Chef Rex Bernales, along with partners Rob Baker, Mo Pierce and Steve Hamlin, Project BBQ’s menu will offer pulled brisket, pork, chicken and more. Its “Garbage Bowl” will include handmade potato chips covered in its signature meats and decked out with a trio of Carolina BBQ, beer and cheese sauces, then topped with applewood-smoked bacon and coleslaw.
Situated on Circa’s exterior, Project BBQ will spill out onto the Fremont Street Experience with a built-in “backyard” for communal gathering. Guests can dine on picnic tables and sip cocktails from Circa’s Fremont Street Experience bar as they enjoy spectacular light shows from Viva Vision overhead and live music from surrounding concert stages.
Circa Resort & Casino will be Downtown Las Vegas’ first ground-up casino resort since 1980. The integrated resort will feature a massive pool open 365 days a year, the world’s largest sportsbook, luxury rooms and suites, and much more.
Additional details will be announced in the coming months. For more information, visit www.circalasvegas.com.
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