FOOD: two new eateries offer European-inspired food in eclectic environments
-With the addition of Due & Proper and Whist Stove and Spirits, the District at Green Valley Ranch has become Henderson’s epicurean hot spot. The two new restaurants offer high-end European-inspired food, creative cocktails and eclectic atmospheres.
Located next door to each other and across from King’s Fish House, diners are transformed when they walk inside. The doors are like a portal from the suburbs to Downtown Vegas.
The atmosphere quickly changes from District shoppers and kids on the splash pad to a tastefully artistic Victorian Gothic vibe with chandeliers and mismatched chairs.
“It’s something that Henderson needed and that the District needed,” said Chef Antonio Nuñez.
Diners might recognize the feel of the restaurants because they share the creative team from downtown Vegas’ Commonwealth and Park on Fremont. The walls are adorned with custom art that Nuñez described as “deranged.”
The food is American European with a mix of English, French and Spanish cuisine. The two restaurants share a common kitchen and some similar menu items, but Due & Proper is a gastropub with bar and lounge style seating and cocktail waitresses. Whereas, Whist is more upscale casual.
Whist’s menu is playful with brunch items like a mac and cheese omelet, bacon pancakes, duck hash and a Croque Madame sandwich Nuñez said he spent two years perfecting.
“It has a classic béchamel with chicken jus and spices, really good ham and challah bread,” said Nuñez.
The ham and cheese sandwich was smothered with the béchamel sauce and topped with a fried egg with a perfectly runny yolk. It included an arugula side salad with light vinaigrette that balanced out the rich béchamel.
The lunch menu includes a BLT with pork belly, house-made fettuccine, salads and fun appetizers like devil’s eggs.
The eggs are quite a step up from traditional deviled eggs. They are topped with house-made aioli, sweet jalapenos pickled in house, crispy onions for just the right texture and a pinch of fleur de sel.
Over at Due & Proper, menu items include sliders, fish and sticks and bangers and mash – an English gastropub must have.
The bangers (AKA white sausages) snap as you cut through the casing. They’re served on Parmesan potato puree with a red wine demi-glace and beer battered onion rings.
There is also a pastry chef on staff. She prepares fresh pastries that are complimentary with brunch, along with a selection of desserts, including a key lime pie with coconut graham cracker crust.
Nuñez said he is still finessing the menu to fit with what customers want.
“We’re building this from the ground up. People tell me if something is not working,” he said, adding that he is working on some more rustic dishes.
Along with the food and eclectic atmosphere, both restaurants have a large selection of draft and bottled beers and wines, bottomless Bloody Marys and mimosas and prohibition-inspired cocktails.
Maria Bolanos is one Henderson resident who has come back for seconds.
“I love it because I grew up in Henderson. I don’t venture out much, so to have something new and different is very nice,” she said.
Both restaurants are open 24 hours and offer gaming at the bars with big screen TVs, as well as patio seating. | iH
Christie Vanover is a Henderson-based recipe developer, food writer/competitor and photographer. Find more of her work at zestuous.com.
This article was featured on page 8 of the February 2015 issue of Inside Henderson magazine.