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Dining in Las Vegas: Part 1

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Another question about the dress code: I'm heading down there this weekend and have my evening "attire" figured out. But what about during the day? Just walking around the casino's, sightseeing that kind of thing. Are jeans OK?

Jeans are totally fine - just wait until you see how some people dress!

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Thanks for the insights!  It's always interesting to see different cities' dress code etiquette.  L.A. has me totally confounded:  I always feel self-conscious wherever I go there, since I'm not partial to ripped jeans and dirty $300 t-shirts!  :rolleyes:

***Hey, it's a casual city...LOL

To my knowledge the only time my husband really needed to wear a jacket/tie was at L'Orangerie...a very sericous and great restaurant.

Other than that...just dress for comfort ((-:

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OK - here's the question.  Picasso or Le Cirque?  I've been to Picasso, and loved it.  And I've been to Le Cirque 2000 in NYC and loved it.  How is the LV Le Cirque, and is it worth trying over a return visit to Picasso?

For what it's worth...I've been to Le Cirque 2000 once and didn't think it was nearly as good as LV Le Cirque.

I've been to both Picasso and Le Cirque (LV) numerous times and would give Le Cirque somewhat higher marks.

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OK - here's the question.  Picasso or Le Cirque?  I've been to Picasso, and loved it.  And I've been to Le Cirque 2000 in NYC and loved it.  How is the LV Le Cirque, and is it worth trying over a return visit to Picasso?

For what it's worth...I've been to Le Cirque 2000 once and didn't think it was nearly as good as LV Le Cirque.

I've been to both Picasso and Le Cirque (LV) numerous times and would give Le Cirque somewhat higher marks.

Thanks, F-G. For this and for your other suggestions!

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Here's my "rough draft"

Thursday, Dinner - Circo

Friday, Lunch - Olives

Friday, Dinner - Prime

Saturday, Lunch - Noodles

Saturday, Dinner - Le Cirque

Which is better for dinner, Olives or Circo? We don't want three HUGE dinners in a row, hence the casual option on Thursday. I know Prime is "just steak," but it looks like a cool atmosphere.

How'd I do?

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Here's my "rough draft"

Thursday, Dinner - Circo

Friday, Lunch - Olives

Friday, Dinner - Prime

Saturday, Lunch - Noodles

Saturday, Dinner - Le Cirque

Which is better for dinner, Olives or Circo? We don't want three HUGE dinners in a row, hence the casual option on Thursday. I know Prime is "just steak," but it looks like a cool atmosphere.

How'd I do?

***I'd say you done real good !!

I prefer lunch at Olives and Circo for dinner. I consider Prime to be a VERY heavy dinner and might opt for going there Thursday night....a lighter dinner on Friday at Circo and then, pull out all the stops at Le Cirque on Saturday night....this way you don't have two heavy dinners in a row.

Oooops I guess I re-arranged your plans...LOL

Nope.....I wouldn't call Prime 'just steak' by a long-shot. It's a beautiful restaurant....excellent service...but a LOT of food. Every morsal is ala carte...and the 'sides' are great but each one is very large. If each person orders two sides it can turn into overkill.

Since you wrote that you're being comped this isn't such a big issue....but worth mentioning unless you want to look at a LOT of food on your table.

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P.S. I just realized that you left out Michael Mina....so I'm assuming you don't care for seafood? It's very classy place...great food.

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I happen to really like Fix (especially the desserts :biggrin: ). The food is very well prepared and creatively presented. Cocktails are also interesting - I recommend the cucumber martini or the pineapple mojito. I might suggest doing Circo for lunch on Thursday and dinner at Fix (since Fix doesn't open until after 5:00 pm).

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I've been to Aqua (Michael Mina) in the past; I wanted to try places I havent tried yet. I know from your previous posts that Prime has huge portions, so we'll order sides accordingly (one vegetable and one potato to split between the two of us). Even though it's comped, I don't believe in wasting food.

We'll probably pop into Fix for a drink, at least, because I like to check out places.

We've enjoyed Noodles in the past (good Dim Sum for breakfast/lunch), so we'll go back there. Too many good places to try, not enough time!

We stayed at The Venetian one cold, drizzly Februaury weekend and never left the building! (God, I love Zefferino, but The V took out all their good video poker, so we can't play there anymore. :sad: )

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We'll probably pop into Fix for a drink, at least, because I like to check out places.

Oh, I hope you consider having dessert as well. The donuts are really good - they're a light and moist beignet in donut form filled with banana caramel and served with two dipping sauces. Or the brownie with espresso milk shake - the brownie is super rich with a layer of fluffy flourless chocolate cake baked on top.

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We'll probably pop into Fix for a drink, at least, because I like to check out places.

Oh, I hope you consider having dessert as well. The donuts are really good - they're a light and moist beignet in donut form filled with banana caramel and served with two dipping sauces. Or the brownie with espresso milk shake - the brownie is super rich with a layer of fluffy flourless chocolate cake baked on top.

Thanks for the suggestion, Neil - those sound like heaven!

Now maybe you guys can help me to decide just when I should have dessert here: After dinner at Circo, Prime, or Le Cirque? :rolleyes:

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We had a great time this weekend, thanks to all of you for your suggestions.

Friday night we at at N9Ne. I wouldn't call it a great food experience, but it was a fun scene and the people watching was great :biggrin: . We had mediocre entrees but good desserts. It was my friends birthday so they brought us a complimentary warm chocolate cake that was very tasty. We also ordered the smores so that was fun.

Saturday we had a late breakfast at Mon Ami Gabi at the Paris Hotel. It was a beautiful sunny day and we sat out side and soaked it up. Not even thinking about it, we were in the prime seat to watch the fountain at Bellagio. Again, the food was just OK (everyone at our table had either eggs benedict or crepes) but it was still fun.

Saturday night we went to the late show of "O" so we decided to eat at the buffet at Bellagio before. For $35 it was a great value. I had kobe beef, sushi, butternut squash ravioli and tons of shrimp, mussels and clams. And of course the desserts were fabulous. By the way, "O" was great, but if you go, make sure to sit on the floor and not the balcony. There was a lot of action when they come into the audience that we couldn't see because of the overhang.

Sunday we played blackjack at the cheapie places all day and ate accordingly. Sunday night dinner was the best of the trip, Olives. The atmosphere was good, the service great, and the food, yum. We started off with the beef carpaccio appetizer at the recommendation of someone at the table next to us and it did not disappoint. Three of us had duck and one had beef tenderloin. The duck was a sliced breast served on top of polenta and duck confit. That was all topped with a dollop of reduced pear puree. The flavors (cinnamon, star anise?) were fantastic and the duck, especially the confit was great. I didn't try the beef, but I did have a bite of the risotto that came with it - very rich and yummy. We were so full and still needed to play a little more blackjack so espresso was our dessert. The menu looked great though.

Thanks again for all of the rec's.

Lauren


Practice Random Acts of Toasting

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I just returned from a four day stay and had a few good and a few very good meals.

Sunday night we (my wife and I) went to Burger Bar in Mandalay Place. I really liked the concept (pick you meat and your toppings) although It wasn't as easy as you'd think picking out things that all worked together. That said, My wife had the Kobe beef burger with oyster mushrooms and carmelized onions and I had a lamb burger with feta, cucumbers, tomatoes and onions. Both were cooked a perfect (to our taste) medium. The sides of skinny fries and onion rings were hot and crispy as they should be.

Monday was Bradley Ogden. I was a little disappointed that the tasting menu was not a more formalized thing - the wiater needs to ask is it is available and then you aren't told in advance what to expect. So we opted for alacarte ordering. I had their signature blue cheese souffles and a pork tasting. The souffles were rich and airy and creamy with a subtle (as opposed to overpowering) blue chese taste. The pork tasting consisted of a pork filled pierogie over a sweet and sour cabbage, a pork stuffed cabbage roll and a large portion of seard pork tenderloin served over brussels sprouts. All very good and a very unusual combination. But this was one of the two or three best pork dishes I have had anywhere. My wife had a salad (it was ok, but a little boring) and a gnocchi dish (I don't remember the other indgredients). These were good, but a little heavier than the best gnocchi I've had. Desserts were standouts. My wife had an over the top dessert with a white truffle panna cotta, a cold chocolate soup and something else, while I had miniature cinammon coffe cakes with cinammon ice cream. This turned out to be a very good meal despite my disappointment about the tasting menu.

Tuesday was Lotus of Siam. IN am atmosphere not much different from any other strip-maill Thai place, the food was a step up in terms of quality, although I didn't feel that it was so head and shoulders above some of the better places I have been to warrant consideration as the "Best Thai restaurant in America". That said, the saur sausage appetizer was phenomenal and the price was a welcome change from the strip. Out whole meal was $50 compared with $300 at Bradley Ogden.

Wednesday we wen't to Venetian to have a liesurly lunch at Bouchon, but we were disappointed to learn that they are only open for breakfast and dinner during the week. So we went to Pinot Brasserie and had a fine, but not particularly memorable lucnh there.

The final dinner was at Jasmine at the Bellagio. Lovely room with a nice view of the fountains. The food was mostly very good and the service was excellent. I ordered an entree that I understood to be a soft noodle dish, but it came out with a crisp tangle of noodles served over the top of a brothy soup. As soon as I mentione dmy surprice to our waiter he offered to have the kitchen make me something different and returned with my dish re-worked into the best lo-mein style dish I have ever had. Desserts were very good - I had four mini-cremes brulle and my wife had something with bananas (which I can't stand, so I had no taste of this one)

All in all we ate very well this week but came away a little disappointed. Maybe we picked the wrong places or maybe, like the rest of Las Vegas, the food looks better from a distance and doesn't quite live up to the expectations.


Bill Russell

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Wednesday we wen't to Venetian to have a liesurly lunch at Bouchon, but we were disappointed to learn that they are only open for breakfast and dinner during the week.  So we went to Pinot Brasserie and had a fine, but not particularly memorable lucnh there.

Thanks for the report!

The next time you go to The Venetian, you must try Zefferino. It is one of the most authentic Italian restaurants I've ever experienced here in the US. Their trofie with Ligurian pesto, green beans, and potatoes is amazing. And the atmostphere is formal without being stuffy. I don't know why this place doesn't get more press - it's truly a hidden gem.

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The final dinner was at Jasmine at the Bellagio.  Lovely room with a nice view of the fountains.  The food was mostly very good and the service was excellent.  I ordered an entree that I understood to be a soft noodle dish, but it came out with a crisp tangle of noodles served over the top of a brothy soup.  As soon as I mentione dmy surprice to our waiter he offered to have the kitchen make me something different and returned with my dish re-worked into the best lo-mein style dish I have ever had.  Desserts were very good - I had four mini-cremes brulle and my wife had something with bananas (which I can't stand, so I had no taste of this one)

Glad you enjoyed dessert. :biggrin: If you were there on Sunday, then I made your petit cream brulees - vanilla, vanilla with raspberries, chocolate with ganache, and mango/passion with mango pieces. I also made the banana beignets last week for the first time, so your wife may have had some of mine. They are a very soft yeasted beignet with lots of beer and rum filled with passion fruit cream and banana slices.

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Monday was Bradley Ogden. I was a little disappointed that the tasting menu was not a more formalized thing - the wiater needs to ask is it is available and then you aren't told in advance what to expect. So we opted for alacarte ordering.

***I know what you mean about being used to a more formalized approach to the tasting menu. I'm used to seeing it right in front of me too.

That said, I've been to Bradley Ogden twice and did tasting menus both time. I was asked about any food allergies or if there was something I absolutely didn't want to eat.

Once we got past my black pepper allergy we were off and running and I have to say it was kind of fun to be surprised with each course.

All in all we ate very well this week but came away a little disappointed. Maybe we picked the wrong places or maybe, like the rest of Las Vegas, the food looks better from a distance and doesn't quite live up to the expectations.

***Sorry to hear about your disappointments as we go to Las Vegas to eat great food as much as anything else.

I think it's a matter of trial and error. I've had some big disappointments....Aureole and Lutece for instance. I go again and again to favorites but that would become boring if I didn't try some of the new places.

I do believe Las Vegas has amazing food...it's just finding the restaurants that really knock your socks off. Problem is the search can be painfully expensive if you hit a couple of clunkers:

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***Sorry to hear about your disappointments as we go to Las Vegas to eat great food as much as anything else.

I think it's a matter of trial and error. I've had some big disappointments....Aureole and Lutece for instance. I go again and again to favorites but that would become boring if I didn't try some of the new places.

I do believe Las Vegas has amazing food...it's just finding the restaurants that really knock your socks off. Problem is the search can be painfully expensive if you hit a couple of clunkers:


Bill Russell

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***Sorry to hear about your disappointments as we go to Las Vegas to eat great food as much as anything else.

I think it's a matter of trial and error. I've had some big disappointments....Aureole and Lutece for instance. I go again and again to favorites but that would become boring if I didn't try some of the new places.

I do believe Las Vegas has amazing food...it's just finding the restaurants that really knock your socks off. Problem is the search can be painfully expensive if you hit a couple of clunkers:

It wasn't that anything was terrible, in fact everything was very good but none of the meals were in my "Best Ever" category although Bradley Ogden was pretty close. I've been spoiled the last few years and have been to lots of fantastic restaurants in different cities. And outside of a few very good "food cities" (New York, SF, etc) there aren't many destinations that have such a concentration of restaurants.

Plus, there are plenty of other things in Las Vegas to hold your interest.

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I've been to most of the great 'food cities' as well and can still say that some of my 'best meals ever' have been in Las Vegas.

Le Cirque, Bradley Ogden, Michael Mina (Aqua), Nobu....some really special meals that rank up pretty high in my book.

No, can't say anything that matches French Laundry or Inn At Little Washington...but they are in a class by themselves in my book.

I do agree about the "hype factor". When our expectations are SO very high is it possible not be be a little let-down?

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