Trip Report 11/18 to 11/22
Just got back from Las Vegas last night, we were there this past Monday to yesterday, our traditional week before Thanksgiving trip. It's nice, as Vegas is very quiet, no traffic, no crowds, it was great! I thought I would post a short chow review, as I've received lots of great info from this site and wanted to share.
We're in S. CA and drive to Vegas, so we go out for breakfast, hit the road, and are in Vegas in time for lunch. We always head directly to Lotus of Siam for lunch. I have to say, I've been a great admirer of theirs for many years, but from my last visit in August and the most recent visit this past Monday, their crown has tarnished a bit and I don't think we will be back. Although the food is still great, the service has declined drastically and is downright horrendous. In August, they messed up the order (had asked for no ginger and no cilantro), first dish arrived with both, which I picked off, second dish also arrived with both, we sent that dish back. Also, my dish arrived first, then our appetizer, then there was an extremely long wait before my companion's dish arrived. This past Monday, we were seated right away, but had to wait a long time for a server. One finally arrived and took our drink order, but never brought our drinks. Our food came before our drinks did and we had to ask 2 other servers to bring out drinks. Also, the main courses came immediately after the appetizers, as in no time to eat one course before the next one arrived. Then, no one checked with us during the meal (we wanted to order more drinks and were not able to), and it was almost impossible to get a server in order to get our check when we were ready to leave. All in all, a major disappointment on my last 2 visits there, and I don't think we will be back.
Monday night we went to Firefly, their new location on Paradise just down the street from the old location. I really like the new space, much more spacious but it is loud. The menu is the same as before, we had nonalcoholic mojitos, boquerones, bacon wrapped dates, pork empanadas, mixed olives and probably one or two other dishes I can't remember, all were great.
Tuesday we went to Fat Choy for lunch, I heard about them here so thanks for the rec! They are in the Eureka casino, which is a block before Lotus of Siam, on Sahara. Wow, what a find! We loved it so much, we went back again on Friday! The servers were really friendly and fun as well. On Tuesday we had the Peking duck bao and the short rib grilled cheese, with the Ghirardelli chocolate cake for dessert - fantastic! On Friday we had the short rib rice bowl and the Fat Choy burger (comes with bacon, cheese, short rib, fried egg, lettuce, tomato, onion jam and sauce), both were also winners. Their specials that day were a pork belly BLT and bone marrow for $8! Fat Choy is a hidden gem, we will definitely be going back.
Tuesday for dinner, we went to the Barrymore. Hadn't been there before. It was nice, reminded us of an old-school steakhouse kind of feel. Service was attentive. We shared a 14 oz. NY strip steak, which was cooked perfectly, and also had a baked potato and roasted brussel sprouts with bacon. Very good.
Wednesday, we spent the day in Henderson shopping, and had lunch at Table 34 and dinner at Todd's Unique. We had been to both places before. Todd's is another favorite. At Table 34, we both had salads, I had a chef salad with turkey, ham, cheese, egg and tomato. The cheese was fantastic! My companion had a salad with grilled scallops and a balsamic dressing. We liked them both. For dinner, we had halibut at Todd's that came with roasted cauliflower and other veggies and pine nuts. We both had dessert, I had salted caramel butterscotch pudding, and my companion had cinnamon bread pudding. We also enjoyed our meal there very much.
On Thursday, we had lunch at Naked City Pizza. We had heard of this place on TV when it was featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives, and had been there once before. It is in a tiny little bar. The pizza is fantastic and this is one of our new favorite places as well. They have several varieties of pizza, in 3 different sizes. They also have hot sandwiches and snacks there as well. For dinner, we tried another place that was new to us - Gordon Ramsey's Pub and Grill in Caesar's Palace. We shared a roasted beet salad, shepherd's pie and macaroni and cheese. The service was attentive here as well and the servings of the food were fairly large - the salad was easily enough for 3 or 4 people! In fact, I got full and couldn't finish everything. In our opinion, the macaroni and cheese was better than the shepherd's pie, which was just OK.
Also on Tuesday night, we went to the Ethel M chocolate factory, as their holiday lights were up, this is a sight definitely worth seeing. They keep the store open late as well, so we picked up some yummy pecan brittle and interesting flavors of chocolates, such as peanut butter and jelly, eggnog and cinnamon.
Seems like that week went by pretty fast! We've already decided that on our next trip, we will only eat at places we have not been to before - this board really helps with that planning! Enjoy!
Thanks for an old-school trip report. We don't have enough of them here.
And thanks for the reminder to try Naked City Pizza. I always mean to try it. I did get to try the new Summerlin Settebello on West Sahara twice on a recent trip. The pizza was just as good as the Henderson branch, including a bigger menu with more charcuterie items.
I'm really sad to see that you had service issues at LOS. On my last trip, I went twice for lunch and twice for dinner. I did notice that at lunch, there were many new waiters, while I recognized all the waiters at dinner. I didn't experience any service issues, but that might be a partial explanation.
Thanks so much for the report and ideas. We're leaving Thursday for our five-day trip and I am trying to winnow down our chow list! Seems like maybe we can/should skip LOS? Damn. I was excited to try it, but would not be excited to have such sucky service! :-( Right now, the only definites on our list are Raku, Viva Las Arepas and now, thanks to you, Fat Choy! :-) I have a zillion other possibilities, though... so much food, not enough time!
I think it would be nuts to skip LOS. It's still my favorite place to eat in Las Vegas, and the service is usually great. If you have the slightest problem, ask for Ae, the GM, or Joe, his assistant, or Sabrina -- the young woman who is usually behind the front desk -- she is the younger daughter of the Chutimas, owner of the establishment.
If you go to Viva Las Arepas, and I hope you do, be sure and stop at the Art of Flavors next door, for wonderful gelato. And make sure to look for any specials at Viva. Especially in the cold weather, soups and stews are often offered, and they are shareable despite the low price.
re: Dave Feldman
OK, OK, you convinced me! We will more than likely give LOS a try. Thanks for the names to drop! (Hope we don't need to!)
And we for sure will go to Viva, and Art of Flavors is on the list, too, assuming we don't have our fill at Viva! Thanks for the tip to check for specials... we certainly will.
I appreciate all the help and insight from all the Vegas Hounds (and recent visitors!). Looking forward to our trip. I just have to get myself packed and ready - we leave tomorrow! :-)