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Las Vegas tips

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pekk84 May 31, 2007 02:08 PM

I like to consider myself a bit of a "Foody" but unfortunately I'm a middle class guy living in Duluth, Minnesota. So rarely is my passion for fine cuisine able to be sated. But my wife and I are going to Vegas in about a month. So I am quite excited to sample some of what they have to offer. So far we are going to Wolfgang Puck's Bar and Grill(her choice) and Bouchon(my choice), but we ran into a problem with our third and last choice. I was thrilled to see Mario Batali had opened up a place out there, but my wife refuses to eat there. Watching him cook with brains and innards on Food Network has made it a no go in her mind. I tried to explain that he cooks classic American/Italian food as well, but to no avail. So I guess my question is what would most of you suggest for our last supper in Las Vegas? I personally would like to keep it Italian but would be open to anything. If you could only have one meal in Las Vegas, where would it be?

Also I'm leaning towards La Scala, but have a question about Italian dining. Both La Scala and B and B have their menus divided by courses. Do you really have to have an anti pasti, pasta, and main course to get a filling meal. Or could you get by with each ordering an anti pasti and a pasta course and be full? I've seen differing accounts on this previously on this board.

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  1. The Dairy Queen RE: pekk84 May 31, 2007 02:12 PM

    If I could only have one meal in Las Vegas, it would probably be Lotus of Siam (Thai), where I've eaten before OR Rosemary's, a chowhound favorite that I'm embarrassed to say I've never been to. Next time! If you do a search, you'll get a zillion hits on both places. My guess is that Rosemary's would come very close to meeting your requirements, but I'll defer to the wiser 'hounds who have been there.

    http://www.saipinchutima.com/
    http://www.rosemarysrestaurant.com/

    P.S. Will you have a car?

    ~TDQ

    6 Replies
    1. re: The Dairy Queen
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      pekk84 RE: The Dairy Queen May 31, 2007 02:29 PM

      Thanks for the reply, and we will not have a car. But I have no problem taking a cab if the dining experience is worth the trip.

      1. re: pekk84
        The Dairy Queen RE: pekk84 Jun 1, 2007 01:07 AM

        No problem taking a cab to LOS, but it sounds from various posts (I searched this board for "Rosemary's and cab" and got a bunch of hits) that it would be a pretty expensive cab ride--this post says $50. Don't know if that's true: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/95989... If you have your heart set on an on-strip experience, this may not be the place for you.

        I searched on LOS and cab and it seems that a taxi to & fro LOS wouldn't be a problem. (I drove the time I went). http://www.chowhound.com/topics/94808...

        ~TDQ

      2. re: The Dairy Queen
        ccl1111 RE: The Dairy Queen May 31, 2007 11:31 PM

        i totally agree on lotus of siam. i visited both los & rosemary's for the first time last week. while it's not fancy, i absolutely cannot wait to go back to los. we have another engagement there in a few weeks & there will be a few of us out there for several days & i'm going to push for multiple visits. was a bit tough to sample much when i was by myself.

        1. re: The Dairy Queen
          OCAnn RE: The Dairy Queen Jun 1, 2007 08:57 AM

          I'd say that ROSEMARY'S, while a great neighbourhood and special occasion restaurant, isn't a destination spot. But unlike all the other places on the Strip, it isn't a chain. Here's my experience from last week: www.chowhound.com/topics/406259 .

          1. re: OCAnn
            The Dairy Queen RE: OCAnn Jun 1, 2007 09:22 AM

            OCAnn, I agree with you. It was my knee-jerk reply to "where would you eat," but, upon further reflection I have the feeling that while he and his wife would surely enjoy the restaurant, it might not be the kind of "destination" experience they are looking for. I'll have a look at your link.

            ~TDQ

          2. re: The Dairy Queen
            k
            kel RE: The Dairy Queen Jun 2, 2007 05:30 PM

            Do not waste time with LOS.

          3. Veggo RE: pekk84 May 31, 2007 02:32 PM

            The osso bucco at Piero's is consistently good. An old reliable with classic tableside preparations is Michaels at Barbary Coast. Two seatings nightly as I recall.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Veggo
              Debbie W RE: Veggo May 31, 2007 05:49 PM

              Michael's has moved to Southpointe.

            2. s
              suzyshi RE: pekk84 May 31, 2007 02:54 PM

              The B + B menu is actually posted (with no prices) on the Venetian website...Have you tried showing it to your wife. Once she sees it she may reconsider as there really are a ton of non-organ meat dishes to be had. We did the pasta tasting menu which was delicious and not a sweetbread or any other organ to be seen on any of the dishes.

              1 Reply
              1. re: suzyshi
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                pekk84 RE: suzyshi May 31, 2007 03:24 PM

                I did look at the menu and told her everything you said. She told me that she watched him cook on Food Network and wanted nothing to do with him, even if the dish contained no lamb brains. While I have opened her up food-wise more than when I met her, she's still not quite on my level of adventurous eating.

              2. Debbie W RE: pekk84 May 31, 2007 04:40 PM

                There are so many places that are better than Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill (assuming you mean the one in the MGM). That is basically a casual cafe and while the food is competent, it isn't remotely special. Are you obligated to defer to your wife's choice on that? Is there any chance you could persuade her to have lunch there instead of dinner, so as to open up another of your nights to a restaurant which has cuisine that you can't find in Duluth? It's fine for lunch, really it is. Do you have a dinner budget?

                If I could have only one meal in Vegas, and assuming it wouldn't be at the $500/pp. places like Guy Savoy, Joel Robuchon or Alex (well, Alex isn't necessarily quite that much), I would tear out my hair trying to make a choice. I would perhaps choose Bartolotta. Or Bouchon. Or Fleur de Lys. I'm assuming you get plenty-o-steak in Minn. and don't care about a steakhouse.

                p.s. B&B was really good and even though I had lamb's tongue, our friends didn't have anything especially adventurous in terms of innards.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Debbie W
                  The Dairy Queen RE: Debbie W Jun 1, 2007 01:17 AM

                  I agree with Debbie's point about the Wolfgang Puck restaurant. Though I've not eaten at his Vegas restaurant, I've eaten at other Puck restaurants and always wondered what the hype was. I do see, though, from the original question that the Puck restaurant is the choice of Mrs. pekk84, so, maybe it has to stay "on the list" to preserve marital bliss. I know Minneapolis is not Duluth, but does Mrs. pekk84 know there's a Puck restaurant (20.21 at the Walker Art Center) in Minneapolis? Maybe if she knew there was one so close to home she would allow it to come off the "Vegas must do" list to allow room for others?

                  ~TDQ

                2. l
                  lvnvflyer RE: pekk84 Jun 1, 2007 07:47 AM

                  Bouchon is great! I wouldn't spend the cab fare to go to Rosemary's...it's a very good restaurant, but it's a long way from the strip and although very well priced, that is eaten up by the cab fare. Lotus of Siam is fabulous, some of the best thai anywhere. It's a shame about B&B....I've eaten at Babbo in NYC and it was terrific. Piero's is a good old school choice; I've heard mixed reviews about Rao's at Caeser's, although I just spoke with someone who liked it very much. Just off the strip but a reasonable cab drive is a good italian place, Panevino, which has a great view down the strip and a nice menu. As to the ordering, I think that an entree is often not necessary at an italian restaurant if you are doing a first course and a pasta course, or you could mix it up and one order pasta and one an entree....if you are good at sharing.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: lvnvflyer
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                    persally RE: lvnvflyer Jun 1, 2007 08:26 AM

                    Chef Eric Klein is at Spago now, you may remember him from SW Steakhouse at the Wynn. We had an excellent meal there a few weeks ago, if you have to do a Puck restaurant, go there!

                    1. re: persally
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                      pekk84 RE: persally Jun 1, 2007 09:03 AM

                      I'm thinking that Puck may be better for lunch. It wasn't a deal breaker as far as she was concerned. I think we may go to Nobu on our last night there. Bumping around elsewhere on the board it seemed like many thought they had some of the best Sushi in town. Plus it will be convenient because there's a show at The Joint that night that sounds like fun. Anyone know what the dress code is like at Nobu? Casual? Business Casual? Dressy? That's one of the things I really like about Open Table is they give you a clue as to what is the norm as far as how to dress. So now I have Bouchon and Nobu, and need one more to round out the trip. It really is amazingly hard to try and narrow it down from so many good restaurants.

                      1. re: pekk84
                        OCAnn RE: pekk84 Jun 1, 2007 09:12 AM

                        I really liked NOBU. Most restaurant memories fade quickly for me, but NOBU is a standout for me (the combination of food/atmosphere/service was great). I don't recall ordering any sushi while I was there, but more of their signature dishes which are fusion or a different take on Japanese standards--most of which were utterly sublime and savoury.

                        As far as dress code, I'd say dressy or business casual; though for the young & beautiful, nice jeans seem to work. Being middle-aged and frumpy, I had to kick it up a notch by dressing business-dressy.

                        Enjoy your Vegas trip!

                        1. re: OCAnn
                          ccl1111 RE: OCAnn Jun 1, 2007 04:28 PM

                          nice jeans definitely work at nobu. wife & i have always jeaned there and never got any nasty looks.

                          1. re: ccl1111
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                            persally RE: ccl1111 Jun 1, 2007 06:43 PM

                            Nobu is great. Really whatever you would like to wear there should work, save flip-flops and shorts. If you like Italian and seafood, go to Bartolotta at the Wynn, ask to sit outside if possible, great relaxed area and great food to boot! If you don't like seafood, get the veal chop, but whatever you do, DON'T MISS BARTOLOTTA!

                    2. re: lvnvflyer
                      GroovinGourmet RE: lvnvflyer Jun 2, 2007 07:06 AM

                      As another posted, Rosemary's is easily reachable by bus...just get on one going west on Sahara and get off at Cimarron. I think they posted that it's about $6.

                    3. m
                      Mel RE: pekk84 Jun 1, 2007 09:01 AM

                      Rosemary's is great and it is worth it.... it is about about a $25 cab ride each way, but the meal is worth it and if you go on sunday night, wine is 1/2 off which makes it even better.

                      in terms of the strip, puck's restaurant is much more of a lunch place and agree with others that say go there for lunch.

                      Fiamma at MGM is pretty amazing, I sent my parents there last time, and they have not stopped raving about it... caution though, they reported that the wine list was quite pricey.

                      I would look at maybe Mon Ami Gabi on the patio overlooking the fountains is quite a lovely vegas expererience (including the people watching too)

                      1. Tom P RE: pekk84 Jun 3, 2007 11:53 AM

                        Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill is quite good, but I agree you should go there for lunch or a late afternoon snack/cocktail. I love to sit at the bar there, have a martini and get one of their pizzas, which are incredible. Use your three dinners on places a bit more special. For steak, I like PRIME at Bellagio or N9NE at The Palms, both are out of this world. I recently had a very good meal at NOB HILL, at MGM. Don't miss having a cocktail at MIX on top of TheHotel at Mandalay Bay. It is the best view in Vegas, unbelievable.

                        1. n
                          nosh RE: pekk84 Feb 28, 2008 03:52 PM

                          First, my favorite hotel by far in Vegas is the Hard Rock. Even with its expansion, it is still smaller than most of the huge megaspots on the strip and thus much easier to navigate, and if you are at all into music you will enjoy the memorabilia displayed all over and the soundtrack. Also be sure to check out the pool. As mentioned, you can certainly dress casual, but avoid the touristy stereotypes and dress neatly. Please note that it is too far to walk from the Hard Rock to the Strip, and after a show at the Joint there can be a very long and frustrating line awaiting cabs. The Hard Rock has a bus that leaves every hour and makes two or three stops along the Strip, but its last trip may be too early to get you back. If you need to kill some time after the show and don't want to wander or gamble, the 24-hour coffee shop at the Hard Rock has an off-menu "Lucky Seven" special of a steak dinner for $7.77 or so, and the coffee shop is much better than you'd expect.

                          If your wife has her heart set on sampling a Wolfgang Puck restaurant, I agree with the other posters that you may want to get her to get excited about Spago. Puck also used to have at least two other offshoots in or near the Forum shops -- Chinois, his fusion restaurant, and Postrio, from his hotel restaurant in SF. I gotta think that any of the three would be better than the Bar and Grill, though I'll defer to locals or frequent visitors who are more up to date.

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