Las Vegas - short reviews
Just got back from Vegas (heaven!) and thought I'd jot as follows:
L'Atelier (MGM) - I loved this place - very small, very intense experience with a very nice tasting menu. Service was expert, watching the chefs was so much fun and the food was great. My husband was put off by having to sit sushi-bar style around the bar, but perhaps that was my fault for not warning him. The bathroom here is existential. I would not recommend this restaurant for anyone who doesn't enjoy the work of preparing food.
Craftsteak (MGM) - Hands down the best dining service of the trip. I called to check the time and they told me they had lost my reservation, but they made another and we had an excellent, spacious table in the back. Our server, Patricia, spent more than her allotment of time on us - assuring my husband about the steaks and his choices. Another server kept coming by and informing everyone of the score of the KU-Memphis game in a very in(un?)obtrusive manner. At one point, I questioned whether the greens in my cuke salad were actually the advertised watercress and the kitchen took the time to send a bunch of it out in its original wrapping with a detailed explanation of why it was so tasty and so sizeable. Food was perfection. Other than the cuke salad, we had jerusalem artichokes, a creamy gratin of potatos & leeks and, of course, steaks. I got the australian waygu (sp?) which was definitely worth every penny over the regular steak, although the regular steak was quite good as well. Also my husband commented on the excellent pricing of some of the wines and the sommelier came over to discuss and was charming. In my book, Craftsteak only trails Peter Lugars in Brooklyn (I love it nostalgically). Atmosphere is Grand Steakhouse with low lights and leather but open and huge. Next time I will get the fois gras and the japanese super-steak.
We also had dinner at Jasmine at Bellagio and, other than the dancing fountains (fun the first 10 times) and the excellent lady sommelier, it was regrettable. Food was overpriced even by Vegas standards, portions smallish and it actually tasted like they used La Choy soy sauce to cook everything. Would not go back.
What looked like a scary foray into Buffetville was actually fairly decent at the Wynn. Sorry, I don't have the name. Lots of variety, fresh fruits and veggies.
Breakfast and lunch at Four Seasons poolside was faultless. Not extraordinary, but the level of service and the surroundings made it great.
Can't wait to go back and try more!
I agree with your husband about the sushi bar type format of L'Atelier. The tasting menu was top-notch, but I don't forsee going there again. I was just never able to get comfortable there. It's too bad I'm so down on that format because the tasting menu at Bar Charlie looks amazing. Too bad.
Thanks for your report. BTW, anything poolside at the Four Seasons is fabulous. I think poolside at the Four Seasons has to be one of my favorite places in Vegas.
Curious: why did the Wynn look like a "scary foray into Buffetville." Is this a comment on buffets in general, or are the surroundings/atmmosphere not up to par?
Right On! about 4 Seasons poolside.
The idea of going to a buffet is usually repugnant to me only because I tend to eat all bad-for-me food and walk away groaning with self-disgust. The atmosphere at the Wynn buffet was very pleasant, although impersonal. So, I guess a comment on both.