Monday, Sept. 2, 2013 | 10 a.m.
Chef and owner Sam Marvin’s two-level, 12,500-square-foot Echo & Rig Butcher and Steakhouse in Tivoli Village is unique in name and concept.
Chef Marvin told me at a sneak preview last Tuesday morning that he wanted a name that stood out and wasn’t pedestrian (think cut, prime, etc.). In doing word exercises, Echo — as in the sexy nymph — and rig, an Irish word for “king,” stuck with the chef.
Echo & Rig is a steakhouse and butcher shop, where a patron may choose from a menu of more than 90 items in the restaurant as well as take home red and white meaty deliciousness prepared by 23-year-old “butcher savant” Trevor Morones and his team. “He’s a meat geek; I love that,” a colleague said.
At the sneak peek, there were many delightful highlights: the amazing applewood-smoked bacon and house-made pate; cocktails prepared by a mixologist and bartending team, among them Strawberry Blitz and Punch 1602; Morones’ detailing of his background and how he approaches butchery; and a tour of the meat locker, viewable from the sidewalk.
Lunch standouts: an Over the Rainbow salad featuring faro; a kale and beet salad; bone marrow(!) carne asada; cauliflower with red chili flakes; stuffed mushrooms; and the steak, of course, with four of the accompanying sauces (my favorite was the chimichurri; two of my table mates chose the bleu cheese). I’m ready to return immediately for a steak dinner. Or just chill sitting at the meat bar sampling charcuterie. Or buy meats to grill at home.
In attendance at the sneak peek: Chef Marvin, of course; butcher Morones; chefs Frank Fronda and Aaron Oster; Michael Balabon, one of the owners and chief operating officer; investors Tony Lee, Robert Plotkowski and Jordan Fishman; and Nicole Tilley, director of guest relations, immediately friendly and high energy.
I returned to Echo & Rig on Friday night (opening night) and brought my brother and two friends. We chilled in the bar and enjoyed cocktails prepared by Beverage Manager Jason Wakefield and his team; a favorite was the reimagined Moscow Mule. Morones gave my group a tour of the meat locker. Chef Marvin and Balabon were busy but friendly and talked with new customers and friends. Tilley remained high energy.
Echo & Rig is a welcome new kid on the block at Tivoli Village. I like the concept, the off-Strip pricing for the high quality, the butcher shop, the bright atmosphere from the floor-to-ceiling windows and the cream-colored walls in the upstairs dining room and patio dining area, and the friendly and family friendly atmosphere (a father was feeding a bottle to his baby in the cafe on Friday night, and it was natural and unobtrusive).
Above all, Marvin describes Echo & Rig as affordable fine dining. That’s music to diners’ ears — and another excellent reason to make the trek to Echo & Rig in the Summerlin area/northwest Las Vegas from Henderson (and other far-flung areas of town).
Echo & Rig, 440 S. Rampart Blvd. in Tivoli Village, opened for business on Friday. Hours of operation: 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
Don Chareunsy is senior editor for arts and entertainment of the Las Vegas Sun.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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