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Jan 4, 2009 09:38 PM

Vegas Birthday Dinner

I am going to Vegas this weekend for a "blowout" birthday bash. I have reservations on Saturday at Guy Savoy. I realize this topic has been oft-discussed but I would appreciate some feedback from the Vegas 'hounds. Want to do at least two "spectacular" meals. After perusing the Board I settled on GS and Alex. But, I keep reading about the Trotter places, L'Atelier etc. etc. and am questioning my original call. I'd appreciate the most up-to-date advice you folks are willing to give me. Has anyone been to the new high-end place in the Encore? Should I just stick with my original two?

On another note - Has anyone ever had a problem getting the tasting menu at GS (or any other venue) for just one of two diners> My wife has resigned herself to watching me eat and drink wine as she is not usually up for the whole shebang. I've been to more than one place (not in Vegas) that has refused to serve the tasting menu for less than the entire table. I don't go back to those places. BTW although off topic a bit, my review of La Folie in San Francisco notes this place is the ideal tasting menu. They encourage diners to customize either a 3,4,or 5 course menu and provide the amuse bouche etc. to turn the 5-courser into a 10. Thanks for the help.

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  1. I really enjoy Mon Ami Gabi inside of the Paris hotel and casino. Impeccable service and great quality and cut of steaks.

    1. I don't know how lenient they are @ Guy Savoy, but sounds like you won't be returning as their menu says "Menu served for the entire table". Perhaps you and your wife can be seated separately but nearby?

      1 Reply
      1. re: itwillmakeaturd

        Most tasting menus, in my experience, have some sort of note like this but are willing to be flexible. The rationale has more to do with the timing of the meal than anything else. That's a creative thought you have. I can just ask that my wife and I be seated at separate, but adjoining tables. Nice screen name by the way.

      2. Your original two are excellent picks, I wouldn't change a thing.

        If you're looking for something on another night, Bradley Ogden is amazing! Very flavorful, great presentation, a place I left very satisfied.

        1. You might call GS and ask to speak with Frank (Guy Savoy's son). He manages the restaurant and is a constant presence and a really nice person. I'm sure if you explain your situation he will accommodate you. If not, with all the amuses that arrive prior to dinner and dessert as well as the bread and dessert cart, you will feel like you've eaten a tasting menu. They will also pair wines for you if you order off the menu. It's a fantastic restaurant and will make for a memorable bday.

          I believe that Alex is in the same league as GS. It would also make for a memorable evening. Both Alex and GS are French so combining them on the same trip may or may not be a good idea.

          Charlie Trotter's place I believe will eventually be spoken of along with the best places in Vegas (if it can survive the recession). There are two dintinct parts of the restaurant. The restaurant that serves a tasting menu and alacarte and Bar Charlie which serves tasting/omakase menus at a bar where you watch your food being crafted. They have a 14-course menu which was one of my finer dining experiences. They will taylor the menu to your tastes and needs. There is also an 8-course menu which my wife had when she was pregnant and could not eat raw fish which she still speaks about. This seems like it would be a great compliment to GS.

          I'm not sure which Encore restaurant would be considered the "high-end" place. I dined at Botero. Here's my review:

          I'm dining at Sinatra next week. Switch looks high-end but not necessarily more than the other two.

          I find L'Atelier to be good but not in the same league as Alex, GS, CT. I'm in the minority who feels that way though.

          Sounds like a great bday weekend. Have fun!

          3 Replies
          1. re: climberdoc

            Thanks, climberdoc. I think I am going to bag Alex. The people at the Wynn (not Alex) pissed me off so I cancelled my reservations at the Hotel and will likely do so at Alex too. I really like the looks of the menu at Charlie Trotter's (both) so will likely do one of them. The restaurant I was talking about in the Encore is Switch. (Thanks for reminding me). I know the guy who supplies that place with its truffles, fois gras etc. I appreciate the input. I'm also going to hit up Lotus of Siam and, probably, the Sunday bruch at Bally's (nostalgia more than anything else). Do you have any experience with the "mega brunch" at any other place?

            1. re: lebdog

              Those menus posted at CT are not current. They are however good representations of what you can expect when you open the menu. I look forward to hearing about your experience.

              1. re: climberdoc

                Thank you climberdoc. You are my new hero. I just returned from the Las Vegas extravaganza. We ate at Guy Savoy and Restaurant Charlie (and some others touched on below). I enjoyed Guy Savoy and was prepared to write a glowing review until, two nights later, we ate at Restaurant Charlie. I will likely post a more detailed review of one or both when I have more time. Bottom line is this.

                GS - Service was top notch (except for a glitch involving the men's toilet which I won't described and would not, ordinarily merit a comment but for the fact that Guy Savoy employs someone whose sole job is to open the doors and tidy up the one-unit bathrooms after each use). As for the food, I had the tasting menu and, despite some fabulous dishes, the best parts of the meal were the "off menu" items (amuse, bread cart, cheeses, dessert cart). Plus, my wife had the bass off the menu that was embarrassingly undercooked. We should have, but did not, send it back. Attitude smacked of the typical high end french place - what a surprise? - in that dinners at such place always seem to be designed to intimidate the patrons.

                Charlie Trotter - One of the best experiences of my eating career. I share the concern of those who fear for the survival of this place. We ate there on Monday night at 8:00. No one was at Bar Charlie. I think there were 5 tables occupied in the restaurant. I had the 14-course tasting menu with wine pairing. I could not think of a negative comment for about 10 of the 14 dishes. That's saying something for me. I will describe in a subsequent post. We had Aaron was our wine expert (and Mark as our waiter). Aaron was a great guy, took lots of time with us, allowed us to sample and his pairings were spot on. Again, I'll provide more details later.

                We stayed at Caesar's so ate at Mesa and Beijing Noodle House (or whatever that place is now called). I"ll review those too.

                Thanks again climber. I'm now a trotterite.

          2. L'Atelier has this langostine fritter that is soooooooo delicious.

            definitely try that place out.