Once limited to the historic Westside, Las Vegas’ black-owned dining scene has evolved in recent years. For a long time, the practice of redlining has been an obstacle for black-owned businesses seeking to expand beyond what is colloquially known as the “black strip”. Those that did exist often reflected the flavors and techniques of black Southern cooking, with many of these black restaurateurs belonging to the Great Migration and seeking to bring flavors to Sin City that reminded them of home.
In recent years, business-friendly incentives, relatively affordable housing and a favorable tax climate have attracted a new wave of black residents to the city, as well as immigrants from Ethiopia, Eritrea, Nigeria, Jamaica , Belize and around the world. . As the Las Vegas dining scene has expanded to offer the French haute cuisine of Spago, Nobu and Alain Ducasse, the culinary offerings and imaginations of the African diaspora have also grown.
Like the rest of the country, Las Vegas remains far from fairness. We still don’t have a fully black owned and operated fine dining establishment on the Strip. Luckily, that hasn’t stopped the community from finding opportunities to showcase their culinary talents. Chances are, wherever you are in Las Vegas, there’s at least one black-owned restaurant worth your attention.
Don’t limit your support to Black History Month in February: the following black-owned restaurants encompass soul food, Caribbean cuisine, gastropubs, and more, and are some of the most impressive in town.