Right after I landed in Los Angeles from Atlanta, I hopped onto my boyfriend’s truck and headed to Las Vegas to watch my boys play in the annual Frozen Fury, a pre-season game that promises the exciting new season ahead. I didn’t even bother unpacking my luggage. I just tossed clothes in a washer and dryer and put them back in, some even unfolded!
Boy, has Las Vegas changed tremendously in the past 10 to 15 years or so. I remember going to the Sin City as a kid and the only things to do there were to hang out and play cheesy arcade games at Circus Circus and eat nasty $3 buffet. Now, the city has become the international entertainment and culinary mecca with endless rows of world-class shops and restaurants – the change I most certainly welcome.
With that said, please make all the fun you want at the fact that the first place we ended up was Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill (I know, I’ll wait until you finish laughing). In our defense, the only reason why we ended up at this gastronomic cliché was because the hotel room wasn’t ready for check-in, and we had a $50 credit going toward our meal at MGM Grand … or so we thought. We didn’t find out until we finished our appetizer, our main course, and two drinks, that this was one of the ONLY restaurants in the hotel that did not honor the discount! In one sitting, we had burn through almost half of our weekend food budget …. and it wasn’t even dinner!
The saving grace was that the food here was surprisingly very, very delicious. We ordered the heirloom tomato and burrata salad to start, which turned out to be (dare I say it?) mind-blowing! I love Caprese salad and order it at every opportunity I get and this one felt extra special because this was probably going to be one of the last times I get to enjoy these special tomatoes this season. Also, the balsamic reduction and tiny dollops of pesto puree that accompanied the tomatoes hit the dish out of the rink. The sprinkle of halved cherry tomatoes, sliced onions and pieces of roasted artichoke gave this salad a delicious edge.
Now, with the pasta dishes. My boyfriend ordered the linguini with clams and pancetta, which was, although drained in a sea of butter and oil, nicely salty and flavorful.
In contract, my spaghetti with tomato and basil with a basil smear was light and refreshing. I’ve never been a fan of fresh pasta because I love my pasta el dente and the homemade type gave the mushy, watery consistency. This pasta, however, was still very firm and bouncy. The consistency reminded me a little of undercooked instant ramen noodle but I mean this is a most respectable way.
The bill came out to whopping $90 but oh well, this is Vegas afterall. We need to take a gamble sometime. You walk away a winner one day and a loser the other. In our case, I think we got the long end of the stick. (And by the way, the Kings beat the Avs in a high-scoring, outrageously entertaining game, 4-3!) 🙂
Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill
3799 Las Vegas Blvd., Las Vegas, Nevada 89109