Vintner's Grill in Summerlin -- Just Do It.
- lvmanager Feb 14, 2007 02:00 AM
I stopped by Vintner's Grill tonight since my curiosity got the best of me. It's tucked away in a very speakeasyish type of locale. It's off of Charleston between Hualapai and Town Center. You have to know where to go otherwise you'll miss it. However, once you get there you'll be pleasantly surprised. The room looks almost like an old plantation house from the south. Lots of whitewashed wood with green and gold/tan trim. The lounge portion of the restaurant is more sleek and stylish with modern fixtures. There are a couple outside areas that remind you of the restaurant Sedona ( with fire pits and plush seating under the stars ) but it was a nasty day all around in Vegas and it happened to be raining so I didn't delve too much into the outside -- but I could see the attraction and will definitely check it out at some point. I sat at the bar as I was looking for a quick meal while still keeping it low key and casual. I ended up having the diver scallop entree served with a sweet corn risotto -- fabulous. The scallops were cooked perfectly to a medium with just the right amount of seasoning. The risotto was fantastic. It might been a little undercooked but only by a hair. The dish was nice and clean and had great flavor. I tried the lemon tart for dessert. It was served with a blackberry-merlot sauce and pistachio gelato. I'm not usually one for dessert but I had a sweet tooth and thought I'd give it a go -- I'm glad I did. It was really tasty. The lemon custard was the perfect consistency and the tart shell was great. Flashed under a salamander or a flame and it was just really good with great flavor.
There were only two dings that I could see. 1.) Video poker-laden bar top. I was disappointed to see this but you can't fault a restaurant in Vegas for doing what they can to make money so I can overlook that -- besides, they do have a separate bar area with tables to dine at. I feel the same way about Becker's ( Buffalo & Smoke Ranch ... which I frequented just last night -- great place for a "nice" late night bite but that's a different story ). I just don't feel that video poker belongs in a place like that. and 2.) The service was just not up to par for the image they are trying to portray. There were two female bartenders and both had obviously answered the ad for bartender/model more for the model portion than the bartender part. But then again -- this is Las Vegas and as much as I can't stand it, this is where the town is headed, especially the newer restaurants. One of them greeted me nice enough, gave me a menu, and took my drink order then came back about ten minutes later to see if I was ready to order ( I should hope so ). I placed my order and that was the last I saw of either of them until the food arrived. One of them was way too busy applying lip gloss to even consider interacting with a guest. Neither of them tried to make any conversation with me at all. I didn't mind only because I try to lay low in times like these but I could see where someone might feel like they weren't getting enough attention, especially seeing as how it was the bar. When the food came one of them ( the "prissy"er of the two ) tried to set it in front of me but didn't seem to want to stretch out and actually place the dish so I ended up grabbing it out of her hands and taking care of it. Again, small details I realize but it's all part of the entire package. At any rate, I had to ask them for dessert as opposed to them offereing it -- so on and so forth and I realize that I'm nit picking but all in all it was a great experience.
I will definitely head back and sit in the dining room to futher evaluate. However, based on the food alone I would recommend this to anyone who would find themselves in the area. The food was fantastic, the wine list is very eclectic for the locale, and it has a pretty nice atmosphere.
It appears that they are:
I see that opentable.com has them listed as 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. for lunch. Definitely give it a go, I think you'll be glad you did. There is a map on the website that shows you where it is and believe me you'll need it.
I also see that I added an unnecessary 's to the end of the Vintner. One of my pet peeves. I cringe when I hear people say Spago-'s.
As a soon-to-be ex- bar/grill w/video poker owner, i still find it surprising that there are not more high-end restaurants in the valley - especially in the summerlin/seven hills/etc...i guess one could say the more "affluent " areas ( and trust me...my las vegas condo is not in an affluent area ! ) that avoid the video poker machines. but if that's what it takes for a restaurant to provide a nice menu ...i can live with it. Ventano's comes to mind..i don't consider it to be "high-end" cuisine...but it is definitely a cut above the chain restaurants.
lvmanager - besides table 34, todd's unique, rosemary's, pamplemousse, andre's, can you suggest 5 other restaurants , off the strip, non-chain, that would be considered "fine-dining " ..anything of interest out by lake las vegas ?
I don't find myself out by LLV except on the rare occasion so unfortunately I don't know much about that area. I live in Summerlin so most of what I could recommend would be in the Summerlin/Northwest area. But here are some of my favorite places:
Becker's Steakhouse ( Buffalo & Smoke Ranch -- northwest Vegas )
Grape Street Cafe ( Buffalo & Lake Mead -- northwest Vegas )
Nora's Wine Bar ( Charleston & Ft. Apache -- Summerlin )
Marche Bacchus ( Regatta Dr. in Desert Shores )
Viaggio ( S. Eastern Ave. in Henderson )
To be perfectly fair though -- I really don't consider any of these places to be "fine dining" per se. But, IMO, they all do a really good job on the food and I can go to any of them in casual attire. Out of all five, Becker's and Grape Street are my far-and-away favorites.
Other suggestions for higher end non chain dining in LV would include Panevino (on Sunset near the airport), Piero's (although it gets it's fair share of conventioneers and tourists), Marc's Italian Steakhouse, Table 34 and Gaetano's on Eastern. Out at LLV, there is Medici, which is the dining room at the Ritz, which certainly aspires to fine dining; they have a very nice brunch and good lunches; our one dinner there was not thrilling. Also in LLV Hubert Keller has opened a bistro, Bistro Zinc, which is not super high end, but has a good location near the lake. We've only eaten there once, after a concert, and it wasn't the best circumstances, so can't comment on it too much. Of the restaurants on the east side of town, I think Todd's is definitely the winner, particularly with their generous Wed night corkage policy.....
Time for a "bump" now that we have some beautiful autumn evenings ahead - they have done a nice job of designing their outdoor area, which includes small canopies for larger parties and a couple of fireplaces. And so far we have yet to be disappointed with the food - a visit this week included bastilla-style duck egg rolls with a nice flaky pastry; pumpkin gnocchi accented with sliced pears, crumbled gorgonzola and prosciutto; and crab ravioli with fresh peas (yes, even in October), crimini mushrooms, baby tomatoes and a nice percorino to tie it all together. The service was up to the food quality, and if we had a complaint it was a rather unusual one - the desserts were too large. They have an interesting take on tiramisu that is served in an over-sized coffee mug, and it was not easy to get at all of the different flavor layers without having them separate a bit. And a profiterole sampler did not bring three bite-size pieces, but rather three that could have been a single serving by themselves, especially with the fresh berries on the side. The dessert menu also includes Vosges truffles, which we obviously did not have any room for.
re: Dave Feldman
The prices are comparable to Rosemary's - not inexpensive, but a little better bang for the buck than what would be found on the Strip. They are indeed high enough that if they were posted on the web site it might discourage some from casually giving them a try - Appetizers will run $7-12, Entree's $17-35, Desserts $6-12. Those ranges are right at the borderline for what off-strip proprietors have been able to make work in Las Vegas.