Thursday, June 3, 2010


It's a quandary. A puzzle.

Riddle me this Batman.

I hate gambling, I'm not much into spangly things (unless you count jewellery and shoes), I hate nightclubs and I like going to bed early. Yet I love Las Vegas.

Our flight to Las Vegas on Jet Blue was on time and apart from a few bumps prior to landing, relatively smooth. Surprising given the shitty internal flights we had elsewhere (Delta - you really do suck). We arrived on the Sunday at around lunchtime and despite having to wait in an insane queue to collect our car (an actual car this time, not a truck) and on the road with relative ease. Our check in to our one bedroom suite at the Signature at the MGM Grand was fairly easy as we had stayed there before and we finally made it into our home for the following week.

This part of the trip was going to be a little different for us - Mr Kitty was attending a Financial Services conference and I was going to have some "down time". Oh, and perhaps do a spot of shopping... So unlike me.

Anyway, our dinner on the Sunday evening (Mother's Day - that's how far behind I actually am) was at The Wynn Buffet. I'm not usually a massive fan of the buffet, but this one is an absolute cracker. In fact, the whole hotel and Casino is fantabulous. The food is certainly the best I have ever seen on a buffet and in celebration of Mother's Day there were some additional selections, including a seafood bar featuring ALASKAN CRAB which was very popular. We stuck to the salad, the Prime Rib and pasta and everything we had was amazing. Highly recommended if you are heading in that direction. In fact we liked it so much we went back for breakfast the morning we left and if anything the food was even better!

Mr Kitty's conference didn't start until 3pm on Monday afternoon so we decided to take our Ford Fusion for a spin down to Primm to visit the Factory Outlet Mall. Primm is on the border of California and Las Vegas and about a 45 minute drive from LV. A critical review will reveal that it's really not much cop, other than having a really good Tommy Hilfiger outlet and the biggest Williams Sonoma outlet on the West Coast. Mr Kitty bought many pairs of jeans (three!!), a pair of shorts and a variety of other items and I bought a top. His haul was impressive.

I, however, went to town at Williams Sonoma. I bought petit fours pans, a brownie tin, cake tins, a springform pan, a coffee cake pan, three different types of vanilla, vanilla bean paste, cinnamon pancake mix, sanding sugar... I went a bit nuts, but at 40% off US Retail (which is about half the price of Australian retail) you can't afford not to. It was great fun.

A quick dash back to Las Vegas so Mr Kitty could make the first session of the conference, and I went to Wholefoods to collect some items to make a nice dinner (chicken and vege stir fry - trying to be a bit healthy...). I also did some shopping at Sephora.... So many nice things to be had..! I think it's one of my favourite shops in the US.

The next few days were a bit of a blur (as in they all merged into one)... With Mr Kitty at the conference I took advantage and slept in, did some shopping at Fashion Show Mall and Las Vegas Outlet Mall, watched some movies... All in all had some blissful and relaxed days.

We had a really great dinner and a pretty average one. The great dinner was at Bouchon at The Venetian. Other than the delay in being seated (while others who arrived after us were seated before us... grrrr) the food was sublime as always and the atmosphere is like a dream of Paris. Mr Kitty started with the amazing terrine and I had the watercress and endive salad with walnuts and roquefort. We both had the Steak frites for main (with a side of perfectly cooked green beans) and for dessert we shared a plate of bouchons - awesome little brownies in the shape of champagne corks topped with three different icecreams - peanut butter, raspberry and coconut. It topped off a beautiful meal perfectly.

The average dinner, I am sorry to say, was at Mesa Grill. I was so looking forward to trying Bobby Flay's signature eatery but I was let down. The flavours weren't as complex as I was hoping. And to be honest, a lot of the food was just ordinary... Mr Kitty had the yucatan chicken tacos for entree, which was basically chicken in a soft taco (boring) and I had the smoked chicken and black bean quesadilla which was quite nice (but could have used some coriander to freshen it up a little).

For main course, Mr Kitty had grilled Mahi-Mahi with roasted pineapple-cascabel chilli sauce,
caramelized pineapple and green onion salsa and creamy green chilli rice. It was really boring. The major fault was the lack of taste but the unforgivable sin was the use of tinned pineapple in the salsa. Ewww. Particularly when pineapple was in season, fabulous and cheap. I had the Southwestern spiced duck breast with carrot-habanero Sauce and a chorizo and goat cheese tamale and thyme butter. Other than the chewiness of the duck, this was okay but the tamale was underseasoned and unremarkable. Sad considering I love chorizo and goat cheese.

The desserts fared a little better. Mr Kitty had toasted coconut layer cake with coconut cream sauce. It wasn't bad but the cake itself was quite plain - I just think if you are going to go to the trouble of making a coconut cake, perhaps you should think about putting actual coconut in the cake. Just a hint.

My dessert was really good - Churros dusted with cinnamon sugar and star anise served with dark chocolate sauce. The star anise was an odd inclusion but it kind of worked. It gave a an oddly spiced hint to the dish. I could see how some people might not like it though.

Despite that miss-step, all in all a fabulous week in Las Vegas - next we are headed back to Los Angeles before our flight back to Australia!



Sydney Shop Girl said...

Love the photos, Kitty.

Thanks for the comprehensive food reviews. I have a morbid fascination with American cuisine.

SSG xxx

Miss Kitty-Cat said...

I do too, SSG, and I was so looking forward to Mesa. Terribly disappointing :(

Stay tuned for shoe update coming up shortly!

Kitty xx

Katya said...

I still think I would find Las Vegas a bit too glitz for my taste, but I am tempted to at least find out...

Miss Kitty-Cat said...

What I like about Vegas is that it has something for everyone Katya. I'm not a gambler and I don't particularly like nightclubs, but I love shopping and shows and great food and impressive hotels and Vegas has those in spades. Sure, there are some not so nice things and a seedier side of the city but I just don't go there - too busy having the fun I want to have! It's certainly somewhere everyone should go at least once, I say!

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