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Mar 31, 2011 02:05 PM

é or....?

This might be a very odd question but I will be in Vegas in a few weeks and é by Jose Andres does have an opening for me but I will also be in Chicago in a few months and am wanting to go to Alinea (can't afford both in such a short time span - and yes i know Alinea will end up being about $200 more expensive). Both look to have amazing food, service and lots of modern/molecular gastronomy techniques.

So the question is...does é match up to Alinea? If anyone has gone to both can they comment on which they enjoyed more and why?

Also, how is the quantity of wine pairings at é? I don't want to get sloshed by any means at dinner but it is vegas and would like to have a little buzz going by the time i hit the blackjack table :)

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  1. Been to both, loved both. It's a tough call. Purely on food, é is great, but IMHO Alinea wins. Some people will disagree but I think é is a better experience. It's more fun and there's more interaction. So which do you value more? You won't go wrong with whichever choice you make. If you forced me to choose, I'd probably pick Alinea.

    The wine pairings at é aren't anything special. Solid, but by no means should you go in expecting amazing things. Try as they might, it's tough to find 6 wines to pair against 20 courses. And you shouldn't leave sloshed unless you ask for extra wine. They do several decent pours, but not enough to really give you much more than a buzz.

    May I suggest something? The only way Alinea is $200 more expensive than é is if you get the wine pairings. So maybe you could do both if you skip the wine pairings at Alinea? I know it would be a little more but if it's at all possible that's what I would truly recommend.

    1 Reply
    1. re: jsa056

      I've done bith and I agree totally. If you can't do both. Then Alinea wins.
      No one tops e for the experience of interacting with the chefs. And the food is great. But I wouldn't give up a chance to eat at Alinea for anything.

    2. Alinea was the best meal of my life, better than any Thomas Keller place, and any place in Paris or the north of Spain. Don't miss it.

      1. Thanks very much for the feedback. After A LOT of discussion with the boyfriend we decided to do é and make Alinea a christmas present to each other next year, since I'm moving to Chicago there's a little more flexibility there to go on one of his visits.

        Having a personal experience is such a huge part of an amazing meal to me that I couldn't pass up the idea of é - I'm sure Alinea has flawless service as well but probably not as intimate of a feel with the chefs and servers. I will be dining next Friday the 15th, if anyone else will be there let me know! I will of course report back as well.

        8 Replies
        1. re: AnonymousWaitress

          I like the choice. I definitely think Alinea is a better place to celebrate something like Christmas.

          Knowing that you value the experience at a restaurant leads me to believe you made the right choice. I've been to my fair share of chef's table's, but this was special. Let us know how it went! Enjoy!

          1. re: AnonymousWaitress

            Good decision! Just finished an amazing dinner tonight at e. If I lived in LV, I'd become a regular.
            Food was brilliant (perfect combination of creative and delicious). Service was very attentive and friendly. I was treated like "family". I opted for the non-alcoholic beverage pairings-all were also creative and delicious and worked beautifully with the food. Wonderful interaction with the chefs. We had only 6 people at dinner tonight for the early seating. Everyone was nice. BTW, I too plan on a dinner at Alinea later this year.

            1. re: ellenost

              This board has convinced my husband and I to have a true splurge dinner at é. I am so excited as I believe it will be like nothing we have ever experienced.

              My question is, the only time available was the 5:30 seating (on a Wednesday) and we are just the 2 of us, is it going to be strange if they don't book up? It would be weird if we are there alone? I can't imagine that they don't book up every night, but was kinda surprised they had the room that they did (and happy).

              1. re: cleopatra999

                Trust me when I tell you this....if it ended up being just the two of you.....imagine a group of chefs, and an incredible waitstaff, making and serving you one of the more incredible meals you'll ever eat...It would be incredibly cool if that happened. IMHO of course.

                1. re: sockster

                  I agree completely. It would be a spectacular dinner for just the two of you. I dined solo, and it would have been so much fun to have had all that foie gras just for me! :-) The staff and chefs are wonderful. Special praise for my new friend Anthony; he took special care of me as a solo diner. Definitely plan to return!

                2. re: cleopatra999

                  When we ate there, it was just my wife and me. It was kind of creepy at first but the chefs and servers really are friendly.

                  1. re: zippyh

                    fantastic! I am even more excited now. Does the menu ever change? I have looked at a lot of reviews on line, and have ruined the surprise if the menu is the same from the time these were posted. Sometimes too much information is possible!

                    1. re: cleopatra999

                      If it were me: I'd WANT to dine with just myself and another person. That's the way it was when my wife and I were there. And we were nervous at first. But we wouldn't want it any other way now.
                      I think the menu has changed since we were there in Feb.
                      If I were you, don't read anymore. Enjoy the surprises.

            2. Just got a confirmation for my reservation at E.. I'm so surprised I got in since I'm going the time of the BA Vegas Uncorked event.. I'm really looking forward to this!