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Help me build a "best XXXX on the vegas strip" scavenger hunt!

baronworm Dec 11, 2008 06:24 AM

I've been doing some research online (including this board...) in preparation for an upcoming return trip back to the strip.

Given that my gambling budget is a bit smaller than usual this time :-(, I was thinking it might be fun to go on a scavenger hunt of sorts, traipsing around to various places for "the most amazing _____ on the strip."

So I'm looking for people's very specific recommendations of their favorite "must have" individual food items they seek out when they're in vegas. (particularly on the strip, but who knows we might find ourselves downtown at some point)

To start the discussion, here are items I've come to love from my own past experiences:

* Yogurt Parfait at Bouchon (Venetian)
* Pizza at Pizzeria de Enzo (Venetian, food court)
* A fresh donut from Krispy Kreme at Excalibur (no KK's left here in MN)
* Double-double at In-and-Out (Technically off-strip, but this is also unattainable in MN)
* Stacked Quesadilla at Grand Lux Cafe (Venetian/Palazzo)

Here are other popular suggestions I've come across in my research:

* BBQ at Ellis Island (along with a good microbrew...)
* Biscuits & Gravy at Careful Kitty's (El Cortez, downtown)
* Cuban Sandwich at the Florida Cafe (between strip and downtown)
* Tapas at Cafe Ba Ba Reeba (Fashion Show Mall)
* Burger at Mesa Grill (Caesar's Palace)
* Veggie Burger at The Burger Bar (Mandalay Bay) - good peoplewatching
* Calamari at Cannaletto (Venetian)
* Calamari at The Triple George Grill (downtown)
* Death by Chocolate torte at Chocolate Swan (Mandalay Bay)
* Breakfast Potatoes at Planet Dailies (Planet Hollywood)
* Asian Nachos at Grand Lux Cafe
* Steak Special at Ellis Island
* Spiked Milkshake at BLT Burger (Mirage)
* Volcano Nachos at Margaritaville (Flamingo)

Please share your personal favorites. No complaints about others' suggestions unless you're also suggesting a superior alternative!

AtDhVaAnNkCsE !

  1. MSK Apr 6, 2009 02:54 PM

    Best Chinese Chic Salad and Sweet Potato fries at BLT Burger (Mirage)
    Best Grilled Octopus App at Carnevino (Palazzo)
    - they also serve the very Best Blood Orange Martini!!

    1. j
      jcattles Dec 16, 2008 07:25 AM

      French Onion Soup - Bouchon Venetian

      Ropa Vieja or Pork Roast - Florida Cafe Howard Johnson near downtown

      Roast Turkey Sandwich - Wichcraft MGM

      Chocolate Banana French Toast - Terrace Pointe Cafe Wynn

      Snack Mix - Wynn

      This one's just for fun - Ice Cold Beer - Hawaiian Tropic- (bikini clad servers will gladly take pics with you!)

      (Ditto) French Fries - Bouchon

      Mushroom Ravioli - Maggiano's Fashion Show Mall (yes it's a chain, but it's still good, and like the OP, there's not one where I live)

      Spumoni Ice Cream - Maggiano's (the only place I can ever find it!)

      1. azbirdiemaker Dec 15, 2008 11:48 PM

        I'll toss a couple ...

        Best seared foie gras: Craftsteak
        Best foie torchon: Bouchon
        Best raw bar: Bouchon
        Best chicken: Bouchon
        Best stuffed pasta: Short Rib Raviolini at Fiamma
        Most Impressive Menu: Guy Savoy ( esp the current White Truffle/Fall Menu )

        7 Replies
        1. re: azbirdiemaker
          climberdoc Dec 16, 2008 05:20 AM

          What is torchon azbirdiemaker? I've seen it on a few menus now including the current Alex tasting menu.

          1. re: climberdoc
            azbirdiemaker Dec 16, 2008 11:09 AM

            Torchon is a cooking technique by which the foie is placed in a cloth or towel and poached ( torchon means towel or cloth in French ). It's an extremely drawn out process that lasts several days and has several steps. The end result is a creamy poached foie and what a lot of people would call mousse.

            Thomas Keller's version is the best I've ever tasted ( at the French Laundry to be exact ) but the Bouchon version is nearly identical. His recipe for it are in both the French Laundry and Bouchon cookbooks. But here is a not-so-exact version of it:


            1. re: azbirdiemaker
              Debbie W Dec 16, 2008 03:52 PM

              The foie torchon at Bouchon is incredible. I once ate most of a whole one, followed by the Bibb lettuce salad. Just those two items, and it was perfect.

              1. re: Debbie W
                Jase Dec 16, 2008 09:19 PM

                Heh, I got a weird look the first time I plunked myself down at the bar and it was obvious I was ordering the whole thing for myself.

                1. re: Jase
                  ajs228 Dec 17, 2008 07:49 AM

                  How big is it?

                  1. re: ajs228
                    Debbie W Dec 17, 2008 08:56 AM

                    Big enough for four people to share as an appetizer and still feel like they had enough! It comes in one of those French canning jars and I don't have a sense of how many ounces. I think they use the same jar for their salmon rilletes. Anyway, it's more about the richness than the size.

                    1. re: Debbie W
                      azbirdiemaker Feb 19, 2009 09:18 PM

                      I'd say it's probably 9 oz or a smidge less - so right around the size of a dinner protein. Those jars are bigger than they seem. You're absolutely right ... the richness is the catch. I couldn't see myself eating that whole thing but it is really tasty.

        2. j
          jpc8015 Dec 15, 2008 07:49 PM

          I'm not sure about the burger at Mesa Grill. I haven't had it but it doesn't look like anything spectacular. If you want a burger try Burger Bar at Mandalay Place and if you are set on going to Mesa Grill try the smoked chicken sweet potato hash.

          2 Replies
          1. re: jpc8015
            azbirdiemaker Dec 15, 2008 11:38 PM

            Yeah, I think Burger Bar gets the nod for Best Burger on the Strip. Great concept, beers, proteins, customizations, etc.

            1. re: jpc8015
              toncasmo Dec 17, 2008 07:04 AM

              we like burger bar but my husband just had the one at mesa grill and said it was incredible

            2. p
              pravijn Dec 15, 2008 01:40 PM

              The best Stroganoff I've ever had is the Strozapretti Stroganoff at Red Square (Mandalay Bay). I'm not a martini snob, but somehow their martinis are perfect

              1. m
                Michelle Dec 15, 2008 11:28 AM

                Crispy Rice/sour sausage appetizer, Thai beef salad, sticky rice & mango dessert and Thai iced tea at Lotus of Siam.

                1. p
                  palmdoc1 Dec 15, 2008 10:38 AM

                  french fries at bouchon
                  carpaccio at olives
                  duck confit at DB
                  wagyu beef from kagoshima prefecture at cut
                  anything at l'at

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: palmdoc1
                    happensatonce Dec 15, 2008 11:24 AM

                    You beat me to the beef carpaccio at Olives! We were there in mid-November and the bartender told us that some Food Channel show (he wasn't sure which one) had just filmed a segment on it.

                    1. re: happensatonce
                      azbirdiemaker Dec 15, 2008 11:36 PM

                      I'll third the carpaccio at Olives. That is a great dish.

                  2. c
                    climberdoc Dec 13, 2008 04:24 PM

                    Pinot by the glass (specifically Ken Wright) at Double Helix

                    Kobe short ribs and eggs at Tableau

                    Turkey panini poolside at Four Seasons. May be a bit cold now, but you can order it at Verrandah.

                    Veal Ricotta meatballs at Enoteca

                    Light lunch at Canyon Ranch Cafe (Venetian)

                    Braised pork shoulder at Bouchon

                    Tasting menu at Alex

                    Colors of caviar at Guy Savoy

                    That's enough for now

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: climberdoc
                      azbirdiemaker Dec 15, 2008 11:51 PM

                      For tasting menu, my vote would have to go to Guy Savoy. For me it's the most impressive, innovative, elegant, and encompassing of all the big 3 - Guy, Alex, & Robuchon. ... with honorable mentions to Le Cirque and Picasso.

                      1. re: azbirdiemaker
                        climberdoc Dec 16, 2008 05:28 AM

                        What were your thoughts on the Oysters in ice gelee course at GS? I thought it was a miss. The colors of caviar was one of the most beautiful and delicious courses I've ever been served.

                        1. re: climberdoc
                          azbirdiemaker Dec 16, 2008 10:57 AM

                          I don't remember that course, doc. I was there about 2 months after it opened. Perhaps it was off the menu at the time?

                          I will agree that the colors of caviar is an impressive dish.

                    2. vegasmike Dec 13, 2008 09:35 AM

                      Escargot at Mon Ami Gabi in the Paris. Roasted beet salad at Grand Lux. Beef and barley soup at the Wynn.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: vegasmike
                        climberdoc Dec 13, 2008 04:17 PM

                        Which restaurant at Wynn has the beef and barley soup? That is my favorite soup and Wynn is my favorite resort.

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