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    las vegas nevada
  1. to see my photo spread of both the meat locker at Batali's Carnevino in Vegas, and the steaks enjoyed by me and Mr. Meeker, go to www.eatinglv.com. To answer one of the questions, they have an entire program in place to age beef between 6-8 months and serve it as a "riserva" steaks (very expensive -- $65-$100/inch(!) -- meaning a porterhouse will run around $200 (but is more than enough for three people. To my taste buds -- they are the best steaks I've ever had. John Curtas www.eatinglv.com
  2. For once, I took no notes and very few pictures -- preferring to enjoy the company and the food without making it a research project (I left that to my companions) -- but FYI: the tuna tartare with cumin at Lotus is called "koi soi," and it's equally good with raw beef -- although Chutima spices it much more agressively then. And BTW: Although I fully admit to not being gorgeous (and having a girlfriend {The Food Gal} who is ), let the record reflect that all of my ex-wives considered me to be so at one time or another.
  3. ...and I forgot to mention that China MaMa is located in what used to be a dry cleaner! For all of Las Vegas's soulless, corporate, "Hospitality Group" restaurants, the Asian explosion on and off Spring Mountain Road is a culinary gem waiting to be discovered by adventurous and galloping gourmets. It restores some balance to our bloated, overpriced, celebrity-food "culture," and I was honored to give Messrs. Shaw and Ross a tour.
  4. Shoot, I didn't realize Mike Mills had a place in Vegas! Next time. ← This is John Curtas, a k a TheDiningAdvocate, a k a www.eatinglv.com. I couldn't have said it better than Steven did, and it was truly an Asian food extravaganza for the ages...and I won't be hungry for a week....although those dumplings are looking mighty tempting for a mid-Sunday repast!
  5. Thanks David for the kind words. Egullet.org folks can access my prior stuff (going back 12 years but only about seven are on the website at KNPR.org. And not to mince words, DB in Vegas is a total misfire....and may soon be the poster child for: WHEN THE REACH OF A CELEBRITY CHEF'S EGO EXCEEDS THE GRASP OF HIS TALENT. They've already fired the original executive chef, whose name I'll not reveal since he should not be tarnished by the ill-conceived recipes of the Chef/Owner/Guy With Name Above The Door. And the big coming news to Vegas: Francois Payard will soon open in Caesar's. Prediction: He will be a hit from day one. Caesar's has a very sophisticated and forward-thinking F&B (Food and Beverage) program underway right now---and may soon be the top hotel in Vegas for fine dining (a phrase I abhor, but none other came to mind!). Best and bon appetit to all, John Curtas TheDiningAdvocate....and: yourfriendlyneighborhoodrestaurantcritic
  6. couldn't agree more on Bouchon...they consistently have the best oysters in town....and I try all of them, incluuding myfriend Rick Moonen's....and the Chimay on tap is a plus as well.... Rao's is for ....how can I say this delicately as to not offend anyone???? for yokels and lovers of the Sopranos...uh...no...I LOVE the Sopranos....let's just say Rao's appeals to those wishing to BE the Sopranos. john curtas News 88.9 FM KNPR Nevada Public Radio KNPR.org You made the right decision. I had dinner at Rao's last Sunday night and it was, shall we say, underwhelming. Perhaps our first clue that things were awry should have been the group leaving the restaurant who were visibly angry and saying things along the lines of, "that's the worst food I've ever had!" I won't say that it was that bad, but it was dissapointing. The service was inattentive, bordering on absent, and left us sitting for nearly thirty minutes without water while our check was settled (dinner was comped, and had I not been a guest, I would have been a bit more vocal in my displeasure.) The salads were fair, including an arugula and roasted beet salad that was saved by a very funky (in a good way) gorgonzola. The pastas could be recreated by anyone with a pot of water and the will to eat, and my osso bucco was dry and relatively bland. All in all, Rao's was not a place to which I'd return. That said, we had a fabulous dinner at Bouchon the night prior. The cost was far less than Rao's and the food was terrific from the oysters to the boudin noir. I can't reccomend it highly enough, especially if you are looking for a simpler "compromise" dinner. -Eric ←
  7. Guy Savoy is incapable of bum rushing anyone....they even are quite good about splitting portions (if they can be split) and letting some in your party order a la carte or little or nothing at all as the mood suits you. Rao's is a mistake but Robuchon and Wing Lei may provide transcendental dining experiences if you let them (as will Savoy). But bring $$$ as none are cheap and Robuchon at the Mansion is a house payment for a meal. L'Atelier is my pick for Robuchon-quality food at 75% less money. Best and bon appetit, John Curtas Commentator/Restaurant Critic News 88.9 FM KNPR Nevada Public Radio KNPR.org
  8. If you'd like to read a real review of the food of Robuchon at the Mansion and L'Atelier (instead of Mon. Wexler's gush-a-thon, I refer you to my JohnMariani.com where I wrote one back in May(?). If I could figure out how to navigate this site better....I would offer it for your perusal and comment. best and bon appetit, John Curtas thediningadvocate Commentator/Restaurant Critic KNPR-Nevada Public Radio 88.9FM knpr.org
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