Valentino's - Las Vegas
I'm not sure if there is a point to writing this . . .
On the one hand, Valentino's is a stunning restaurant -- from it's location within the equally stunning Venetian Hotel, to the beautiful decor, to the amazingly delicious food. On the other hand, we've never once seen a menu here . . . each time Lynn and I have been lucky enough to dine here, we've been seated and the food merely "arrives" at our table, along with wines for each course.
Is this the "regular" tasting menu? I honestly don't know . . . if it is, or even if it isn't, the variety of dishes served to us over the coursse(s) of the evening -- each exquisitely done -- has me feeling confident when I say that everything on this menu is excellent. I've never had a dish here that disappointed; indeed, everything has been not merely delicious -- and, come on, how can "delicious" be described as "merely"? -- but each dish has surpassed our expectations . . . .
Thank heavens I don't live in Vegas . . . there are now too many great restaurants there; I'd end up weighing 300 pounds . . . but Valentino's definitely continues to hold on to its spot as THE best Italian restaurant in this town, and one of my "Top Three" overall (along with Lotus of Siam and L'Atlelier de Joel Robuchon).
Wow, our experiences have been 180 degrees. First of all, I was given a menu after the server felt it was the proper time - which took what seemed like an eternity. From there, things went downhill fast. In my opinion, Valentino's takes mediocrity to new depths! Tasteless sauce and uninspired preparations, but at least the prices are astronomical. It's little sister, Valentino "Light" has also been terrifically bad. I'd go to Buca de Beppo before hitting Valentino again.
i admit - i have not hit Valentino in awhile but when i did, i too, was very disappointed - i thought the flagship restaurant in santa monica deteriorated over the years but i'm told one of the better chefs in the past has returned - unfortunately, i am no longer on an expense account nor am i "wined and dined" by others so i doubt i will return.