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Another Quick Vegas Trip Report

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Only time for a couple of meals this past week. Started with lunch a 'witchcraft with a really nice meatloaf, bacon and tomato jam sandwich on country bread. Nicely done. About $8.

Dinner at Cut was interesting. First, business is obviously way off with much of the restaurant shut down. Service was outstanding and there are alot of nice touches like an amusee and complimentary post meal tastes were two bite size lemon bars and two bite sized chocolate bites. Unfortuntately, in between the start and the end there were some problems.

Started with the heirloom tomato salad. Thought it was too big, too busy and the heirlooms, for the most part, tasted like supermarket tomatoes.

The wines by the glass list is a joke. A total of about 10 wines and only one Zinfandel (at $20) for a steak house menu is a shame. They did have a good selection of half bottles. The $20 zin, a Holdredge, was good. Haven't had a chance to check a retail price on this just for comparison.

They really want you to try the Wagyu beef here but at prices well into the three digits that''s not for me. I ordered a 12 oz prime New York which at $55 was second to the least expensive steak on the menu (only a 6 oz filet was less at $48). The steak was good but not $55 good. Out of curiousity I checked the price of this baseline dish at other high end Las Vegas steak houses and most were low to high $40's. Didn't find any in the $50's except Cut. If you are going to have the most expensive New York in town, it ought to be great. It was good but not great. My dinner was $100 before my 25% discount. Even after the discount right back up to $100 with tax and tip) and I just didn't see the value. Maybe this place works for a high roller who wants to show off how much money he spent but not for me.

Dinner the next night at another Puck restaurant, Lupo, was the opposite experience. First, this place was busy early. Hmmm. Kept it simple with a $9 Sauvignon Blanc and a Penne Carbonara. Enjoyed breadsticks and country bread with white bean puree and tapanade dips. A great seat "outside" along the main entry from the parking structure. Great people watching. The carbonara was outstanding. This dish can be heavy but their version came out light. Pancetta was handled differently than I'd seen it with this dish before. Small little cubes that appeared to have been braised. Very tender but with all the pancetta taste. After my 25% discount coupon this was a $24 dinner. Even at full price I thought it was a very good value.

Some other observations: L'Atelier has a $39 "tasting menu." I had the prix fixe $118 menu earlier this year and loved it. If you haven't been, the $39 menu is a great way to experience this restaurant. Be sure and sit at the food bar.

Nearly every restaurant has a prix fixe menu but for most, the net result is they are throwing dessert in for free.

Several high end restaurants were closed (Bradley Ogden, Le Cirque) for several days.

Hotel rates are crazy. I stayed at the Tuscany Suites, a long block off the strip on Flamingo and paid $23 a night. This is a solid three star hotel and the "suite" is really just one big room but with a kitchenette, dining table, couch, Etc. Why they didn't turn these into two room suites is beyond me. Would have been easy. But for $23 who's complaining.

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  1. Thanks, Poerz, for the report. I'm headed to Vegas (for the first time) in a few weeks and your mention of the $39 tasting menu at L'Atelier is intriguing! That sounds like a real steal. Is it safe to assume that it's only 3 courses?

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    1. re: aburkavage

      Yes, three plates. I believe there is a wide choice and not set courses. It was on the MGM website last week. L'Atelier is more than just the food however. The food bar basically surrounds the open kitchen and you get to see quite a show.