Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Vegas baby Vegas

Just came back from a 4 day weekend in Las Vegas for a friend's bachelor party.

The last time I went to Vegas, I was at the Hilton, and there weren't as many people. This time, I stayed at the Bellagio and there was a blackjack tournament going on as well as the World Series of Poker. There were so many people in fact that the Bellagio was overbooked for Thursday and Friday night from what I heard. So this is the real Vegas. Besides seeing some poker names and people who'd been televised in the World Series of Blackjack, the only recognizable face I saw was Dog the bounty hunter.

The food in the smaller Bellagio restaurants were nice and not as crazily overpriced as I would have imagined. We only ate the lunch buffet so it wasn't the gourmet spread, but the food was still good in quality. For dinner, we ate at L'atelier de Joel Robuchon (people who know me know how much I love it) twice and Craftsteak once for our group dinners. Both have branches in NYC, so it wasn't as much destination dining for me. L'atelier was superb on both occasions, the highlights being all the soups, including a gazpacho, a lobster vichyssois, and an asparagus soup. Craftsteak was underwhelming, but looking back, this could have been a result of ordering a group menu.

We also had the tartare showdown, comparing the steak tartare at Craftsteak, Red Square, and L'atelier. My vote went for Red Square, which had the best simple beef flavor and the best texture. Red Square was also one of the few places where we found hangar one vodka. For those who've never had it, please try it if you ever come across it, it'll usually be in a high class restaurant/bar. Red Square actually had 240 different kinds of Vodka, and I was surprised to find out that it was in the China Grill Management umbrella.

There was more to the weekend than just food, but food is all I'm going to write about. ;-) I do expect to be back soon though. There's just so much out there. The only other thing is that it was way too hot and dry. As I was standing by the pool, I could literally feel the moisture getting sucked out of me and I raced back indoors as quickly as I could.

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