Local Celebrity Chef Rick Giffen and the Stratosphere staff hit it right on the money with McCall’s Heartland Grill. The newest addition to an increasingly impressive restaurant lineup, McCall’s breaks new ground by bringing the elegance from atop the tower down to the Stratosphere’s ground level. Incredible taste, creativity, atmosphere and service delivers a sense of fine dining, yet low prices and casual attitude make the place a perfect fit for all occasions.
The intimate layout holds a deep red color scheme, complete with lavish booths, wall-paneled fireplace and a chic bar/lounge area. Nuances such as plates made from melted wine bottles add classy flare to the experience. Sophisticated American fare, an extensive wine list and a provocative mixology program is complimented beautifully by top-notch service: big shout out to Joey, arguably one of the most personable and charismatic servers in this city. Perhaps most impressive, however, is that this experience goes for half the cost, if even that, of what you’d find in the heart of Las Vegas Boulevard.
Choosing an appetizer is difficult, as each dish in the exotic lineup holds its own bold identity. McCall’s flagship starter is the bacon jalapeno-wrapped prawns, tasting as good as they look, served in a tower atop guava barbecue sauce with roasted lemon. The PB&J crostinis feature eclectic additions of bacon and bleu cheese, adding heavenly elements of sweet and savory. Firecracker calamari, buttery lobster cake and lollipop chicken wings each deliver strong natural flavor with an innovative touch that only a well-seasoned chef could conjure.
Speaking of culinary stars, Chef Rick Giffen, who was featured on the Food Network’s Chopped!, incorporates his expertise in all things meat with an impressive entrée selection. Steaks of all cuts are available and you can’t go wrong with anything ‘from the pond.’ McCall’s coffee-rubbed New York Strip was actually conceived in 30 minutes on Chopped! and won Giffen the praise of food celebrities nationwide. The Ono is perfectly cooked, a great feat for such a delicate fish, and the Scottish Salmon is a consistent hit. Enjoy with bacon potato croquettes, rich lobster risotto cakes or perfectly done creamed spinach with Poblano chilis.
Signature desserts such as the deconstructed apple pie and seasonal cheesecake finish off a remarkable experience. Be sure to enjoy a cocktail or two along the way, for they bring classics like mojitos and Tom Collins’ to a new level. Also be sure to check out happy hour, every day from 4-6 p.m., which features appetizer specials, $2 champagne and mimosas, $3 well drinks and featured bottles of wine at half-price.
McCall’s Heatland Grill is located at the Stratosphere’s ground level near the escalator to the tower, past Roxy’s Diner and next to Fellini’s Ristorante. Estimated cost per person with appetizer, entrée, split dessert and 1-2 drinks is ~$35-45. Hours are 11 a.m.-11 p.m. For more information call 1-800-TOWER or visit McCall’s online.