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So I'm at T his Bar ...

RANDOMNESS

The most ADD-addled spot I’ve visited in ADD-everywhere Vegas is Tony Hsieh’s Gold Spike bar. It’s an odd place, a casual workspace by day and a watering hotel by night, where people are prone to distractions and having the creative “collisions” that Hsieh values so much. If Vegas celebrates the fact that you don’t have to care or commit about things, Gold Spike is where you can not care or commit while underdressed. I visited one night with magazine writer Michael Kaplan. Hsieh recognized me and asked if we wanted Fireball shots. Sure, I replied. Then I noticed a familiar face with a crazy story: Lenny Barshack was once declared dead after a heart attack, but was resuscitated. He was very much alive when I met him in New York, and he crushed the poker game I played in for weeks. He’s a fun guy who was in Vegas to see about maybe investing downtown, and seeing him was the kind of chance occurrence to celebrate. But after a quick conversation, I was over it. I saw other friends, we went to a different bar and I came back without anybody at Gold Spike even noticing. Barshack was telling Kaplan about some story idea. I hotel, after another happy night of not believing in fate. Oh, and minutes after Hsieh saw me, he got sidetracked and walked outside with somebody else. He never bought those shots. — Andy Wang

for any NFL Sunday. Drinks are still comped if you bet, an evaporating trend around town. The LVH increases its cachet with its 1,700-seat surround-sound theater, where they show up to 10 games. That’s Football Central. The usual beers and hot dogs are two bucks apiece. It’s just far enough from the Strip to avoid the amateur-hour antics of Joe Tourist. It’s easy in, easy out. And manager Jay Kornegay is without peer for the wagering opportunities his crew provides and for being approachable. Inquire about his Broncos at your own peril. RM 3000 Paradise Road, 702-7325111, thelvh.com

Yard House The parched need look no further than this glorious establishment

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and its 100-plus beer taps. That includes the elusive Longboard, which transports me to Waimea Bay and the Eddie big-wave contest in memory of Eddie Aikau. Three dozen TV screens offer views of sporting contests from every angle of the expansive room. There are three Yard Houses in the valley, but this is no cookie-cutter joint. My favorite location, in Town Square, boasts several ciders and even has two beers for the gluten-challenged. The menu features entrees such as miso-glazed sea bass and ginger-crusted Norwegian salmon. But the fried chicken breast, served over spinach-corn mashed potatoes and bourbon gravy, turns common fare into a delicacy. RM 6593 Las Vegas Blvd. S., 702-734-9273, yardhouse.com

Born and Raised Owned by a cadre of native Las Vegans, BAR is the city’s best (if not only) sports bar and grill built for fans of Runnin’ Rebel basketball (and any other UNLV sport lucky enough to be televised). Rebel mem-

orabilia adorns most wall space not flashed-up by one of the dozens of flat-screens. During college hoops season, every one of those screens is showcasing the Rebels, for better or worse. In a city where almost everyone maintains an allegiance to a team “back home,” it’s nice to have a spot where locals can gather and scream at the TV. And when the game hurts, there’s plenty of quality grub for you to emotionally eat. Cheers: With 20 beers on tap and 18 more by the bottle, the choice is amber. JPR 7250 S. Cimarron Road, 702-685-0258, bornandraisedlv.com

C r ow n & A n c h o r a n d M o n e y P l ay s : c h r i s t o p h e r s m i t h ; B e e r Ta p s c o u r t e s y o f T h e ya r d h o u s e ; B o u l e va r d P o o l C o u r t e s y o f T h e c o s m o p o l i ta n o f L a s V e g a s

didn’t see anybody else I recognized, so I went back to my

Desert Companion - May 2014  

Your guide to living in southern Nevada