Vegas Updates from a Local

/ Updated on June 1, 2014

May 15, 2011

Hi from Las Vegas! Well we have interesting news from the culinary industry here. Jose' Andras who is the owner and chef at what is considered the world's best restaurant, El Bulli near Barcelona Spain, is closing El Bulli for two years and has come to Las Vegas! He is opening “E” at the Cosmopolitan. His concept is an all inclusive (yes including wine parings for each course and tip!) 9 course dinner (plan on being there for two to three hours) for $250.00 per person. Quite the coup for the CEO at Caesar's. Well yes, seems he had recruited Sr. Andras for Ceasar's Palace BUT when he was surreptitiously let go at Caesar's the Cosmopolitan snatched him up! Because of the relationship that developed, Sr. Andras followed him to the Cosmopolitan! A little egg on the face for those at Caesar's. (Caesar Salad anyone?)

June 28, 2011

My dear friend Jeraldine is in town this week from San Francisco. We are doing a gastronomic tour of the area that includes some of the old established eateries and a few favorites. Jeri and I flew together with the Flying Tigers so we are old flying buddies.

First stop was Mon Ami Gaby at the Paris hotel for a fabulous lunch. My choice was a chicken and brie sandwich on ciabatta bread. Amazingly good as the sauce on the sandwich added just a touch of sweetness that complimented the whole thing. Terry had the skate and Jeri had a seared Ahi tuna salad both were delicious. For dessert we had the most divine apple tartan, yummy! We then went to the Eiffel Tower restaurant for after-lunch cocktails

Yesterday we went to Sonoma Cellars Steak House for their $14,99 Prime rib special. Prepared perfectly, juicy, rare and melted in our mouths. This restaurant is at Sunset Station here in Henderson.

Tomorrow we are going to an older place called Icabods for their prime rib dinner. This place is like Las Vegas '60s eateries in as much as they have live music and singers (glassed-in lounge for us smokers) and very reasonable prices. It has been around for years and seems that they're going to be around for a long time as the place is usually always busy.

Friday I am making salmon florentine en croute' and bidding Jeri farwell 'til next year. We are grilling for the 4th here and just relaxing

July 9, 2011

New Las Vegas update! Gordon Ramsey is opening a steak house at Paris hotel and casino on the strip across from Bellagio! Whoo hoo! Non-food related, it has been announced that construction of a mega ferris wheel larger than the one in London is going in across from Mandalay Bay. They are demolishing those crappy motels to build this monster (hope they sterilize the soil under those seedy places) glad to see them go.

It is monsoon season so we've had some pretty spectacular thunder storms this week, good change for us.

That's it for now!

JULY 13, 2011

Another Las Vegas update! Sadly, Carluccio's (Liberace's old restaurant, which was Tivoli Gardens when he was alive), a fine Italian restaurant has closed after nearly 30 years. The food was great and they always had a piano player and romantic lighting, Que romantico!

The brand new Harmon Tower at City Center was inspected recently and found that the necessary earthquake standards were NOT implimented. What!!!! Oh yes, The fight is on between the contractor and MGM properties as the 27 storied tower cannot be opened. This is so severe that the costs to fix the hotel might be so prohibitive that it might be cheaper to tear down the whole thing and start again. Right now it is considered the most expensive billboard in town as all they can do with the place is hang signs from it!

Never dull here. More updates later!

AUGUST 8, 2011

Las Vegas update! Had the distinct pleasure of dining at Pearl at the MGM last Monday.This is a 3 diamond contemporary Chinese restaurant. The quality of the food was excellent (no MSG here), the service was attentive and the atmosphere was distinctly modern Chinese. Prices were reasonable, albeit not inexpensive, but not the Benehana type of empty your bank account type of prices.

We walked away well satisfied, still solvent, and remarkably were not hungry again an hour later! The sweet and sour beef was excellent as were the wasabi fried shrimp. The garlic chicken lettuce wraps were a delicious and light starter, The only caution would be to skip the dessert. Sorry, but pretty typical of most Asian sweets, they are not that appealing to the American palate.

More later, eat carefully but do eat well!

AUGUST 29, 2011

Las Vegas update! For you travelers who come to Las Vegas and want to find a fun area to visit (and escape the ridiculously high prices of dining on the Strip) you must go 1 mile south on Las Vegas Boulevard to Town Square. This is a brand new area that features restaurants and really cool bars with shopping and a small town design that encourages you to stroll around.

Some notables are The Blue Martini, very popular with everyone, with a plethora of martini choices. The Double Helix is a scotch bar that attracts afficionados of fine scotch and those who like looking at a lot of good looking people!

There are are plenty of really good restaurants like Tommy Bahama (yes the shirt store), they have an excellent menu that features crab cakes that are primarily made from fresh crab,(as opposed to crab flavored bread) delicious! The fish sandwich is huge and covers the entire platter! Oh yum! Brio, the Italian restaurant is also excellent with prices that we locals find pleasing. The place is decorated like an Italian renaissance dream with sweeping white sashes draped throughout the entire ceiling, breath taking and very romantic, and the food is great. For those watching their pennies go to Miller's Ale House. Terrific assortment of beer and ales with unique bar food options, They even feature conch fritters that are light and decadent.

Well you get the idea. There are about 10 more eateries and bars you must explore, Come hungry and plan to spend the day doing something you can brag about when you get home!!

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