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Esther’s Kitchen delays opening date for new downtown location

Updated February 22, 2024 - 9:46 am

Diners have an extra week to eat for the last time at Esther’s Kitchen in downtown Las Vegas — and an extra week until they can eat for the first time at the new Esther’s next door.

As the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported, Esther’s was scheduled to close after dinner service on Feb. 21 at its South Casino Center Boulevard location, then reopen on Leap Day, Feb. 29, at the adjacent 1131 S. Main St., a 10,000-square-foot buildout that began last February.

Now, the original Esther’s is serving at least through dinner on Feb. 28, and the new restaurant is planned to launch March 7. A spokesperson for James Trees, chef-owner of Esther’s, shared the dates with the Review-Journal on Tuesday evening.

The closing and opening were moved back, the spokesperson said, because Tuesday’s rainstorm delayed NV Energy turning on the power at the new restaurant.

Chef and the city

Trees debuted Esther’s in early January 2018. The occasion marked an important milestone in the ongoing renewal of downtown and the return of the chef to his native city after a decade cooking in California, New York, Florida and elsewhere.

Since then, Trees has been named a James Beard Award finalist for Best Chef: Southwest, and his restaurant has gathered accolades as one of the finest restaurants in the city and region.

In January, the Review-Journal toured the progress of the $7 million buildout. At that time, the major kitchen equipment and the wood-fire pizza oven had been installed, all areas of the restaurant had been laid out, and work was proceeding on chandeliers, walls, floors, and a big walnut bar with cutting-edge cocktail stations.

What happens with the old Esther’s when its new version opens? It’s being turned into a high-end tasting restaurant — details to come.

Contact Johnathan L. Wright at jwright@reviewjournal.com. Follow @JLWTaste on Instagram and @ItsJLW on X.

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