Thomas Keller, chef / owner of Bouchon and Bouchon Bakery stopped in
The evening attracted over 160 guests, which included an a wide array of VIP’s, culinary aficionados and the current Miss America 2009 Katie Stam.
Chef Keller's new book "Under Pressure" is written for Chefs but even novices can learn from who many consider the greatest American Chef.
Chef Keller uses a method of cooking food called " Sous Vide". Sous vide is French for "under vacuum" and describes a method of cooking in vacuum sealed plastic pouches at low temperatures for long times. With the proper equipment and some basic knowledge, anyone can prepare consistently delicious and safe food. With more advanced knowledge, a chef can safely create (or modify) recipes to realize their unique vision.
Takes a very detailed look at the techniques of Sous Vide cooking and its history, As well as some very important precautions that need to be taken.
We have visited Bouchon in Las Vegas on numerous occasions and must say, we have never been disappointed. Chef Keller's techniques and influence can been seen everywhere from the decor , food and service.
Please visit Our sister site , The Cuisineist for the unique opportunity to spend a few minuets with Chef Keller and talk about his book, Sous Vide cooking , his thoughts about Las Vegas dining and advice to young Chefs.
You can purchase Chef Keller's new book " Under Pressure " in the VINO LAS VEGAS Store for your convenience.
We have dined many places but have never enjoyed authentic South African fair. Botl'z Bistro in Las Vegas steps up to the plate with monthly wine dinners and this month was South Africa . We jumped at the chance to have South Africa come to us.
The event was hosted by Kristen Kruger of 4Winesplusmore and South African, Jeremy Wilkenson, who is known worldwide for finding excellent boutique wines.
FIRST COURSE :
Chick Pea and Ocra Fry with Coconut Chapatis
Papillon Sparking White Wine, NV South Africa
This was our first experience with a South African Dish and we were pleased. The dish was well balanced with a nice Coconut Chapatis for added sweetness. The Papillon Sparkling White, a blend of Sauvgnon Blanc 30% , Colombard 70% provided aromas of Peach, grass and tropical fruit on the nose. The palate continued through with crispness and a just-dry finish.
SECOND COURSE :
Traditional South African Cape Kidgeree
Van Loveren Estate Chardonnay 2006, South Africa
This dish was perhaps the most interesting of the night. Its very light texture paired well with the Van Loveren Chardonnay with its citrus character. This unwooded Chardonnay provided a dry citrus palate moving into a gentle long smooth finish.
THIRD COURSE :
Cameroon Suya with Bean & Gari Loaf
Van Loveren River Red Meritage , South Africa
We were anxious to try the first meat dish . The Cameroon Suya provided a light game touch to this great authentic dish. The Van Loveren River Red , an unwooded blend of Shriaz 50% , Ruby Cabernet 20% and Merlot 30% was the best pairing of the evening. There was an upfront blast of fruit and berries on the nose and a palate that was light and smooth with soft tannins and a lingering finish.
FOURTH COURSE :
Beignets de Bananas
Van Loveren Pink Lady, Blanc de Noir Muscadell ,2005 South Africa
This dessert was one to be remembered. The Bananas prepared in this classic way were amazing The pairing of the Van Loveren Pink Lady Blanc de Noir Muscadall was a total marriage with the dish. This wonderful wine is at its peak and showed. In the glass , its color was almost rust like with a nose of strawberries and fruit coming through on the palate with a long finish. The label , which we don't normally speak about is memorable with a long stem rose running the length of the bottle.
Botl'z Bistro did a great job with this unique dinner. Jeremy Wilkenson took the guests on a journey through the wines like only a native can do. These monthly wine dinners are becoming well known and we look forward to a journey to New Zealand with Wild Rock Winery in July. For reservations and information on Botl'z Bistro call 702-804-2685.
If a trip to South Africa with Jeremy himself is something you want to experience or more more information on the wines please go to http://www.4WinesPlusmore.com .
We have had the pleasure of dinning at Via Brasil in the past. The food is always amazing and one can make a meal just out of the salad bar. On this occasion we attended their first wine dinner to get the summer started out right with of course some great South American wines.
Sommelier Jean Ricardo had is work cut out for him when considering the wine pairings. With over 18 meat dishes carved table side and the salad bar with sushi and other items would not be an easy task.
We entered and headed for their beautiful bar. Sommelier Jean Ricardo was very gracious and greeted the guests with a lovely Aperitif. Santa Julia , NV Pinot Noir Sparkling was a great way to start things off.
Its elegant Pink color led into a bouquet of red fruit and the expected cherry from the Pinot Noir. On the palate flavors of fresh fruit gave way to a nice balance and long finish.
We started out with a trip to the salad bar and some sushi but kept it kind of light as we knew what was in store for us when the parade of meat would begin. With this first course , Jean Ricardo chose Tamari Torrontes 2007. Torrontes is a white varietal that comes from the Fatima Valley in La Rioja, Argentina . In the glass its showed with yellow/green hues and medium bodied. The Nose exploded with hints of Jasmine and Roses leading to intense flavors of fruit and a long finish.
We flipped our cards to GREEN and the meat parade of Rib Eye, Prime Rib and Suckling Pig began. The second wine was an Argentinean classic. The Zuccardi Q Malbec 2006 Mendoza was a great way to get started with these great cuts of meat. Argentina is considerd the home of Malbec and can take the hot summer temperatures. The best of the Malbecs are deep red , almost inky with lots of dark fruit and soft tannins. This Zuccardi Q 2006 met all of those standards with deep violet and purple hues in the glass. The nose gave us hints of intense ripe fruit , plum , tobacco, vanilla and cassis. On the palate these aromas came through very big and bold with a long finish
Whenever we visit Via Brasil we never think we would have room for desert , BUT a mention of their great Flan and Creme Brulee is a weakness. The last wine of the evening was Concha Y Toro Late Harvest 2005 Sauvignon Blanc 95% Riesling 5%. This wine is from the Maule Valley which has an ancient history of wine making. The sun shines in the Chilean Central Valley over 300 days a year. In the glass this late harvest was golden yellow and a nose of ripe fruit and honey. The palate was very pleasing with flavors of honey and some citrus on the back with a nice finish. The pairing of this Concha Y Toro was a home run.
This South American wine dinner was a great success. Where else would you want to be for a dinner paired with these wines rather than Via Brasil ? Sommelier Jean Ricardo had a difficult task to pair wines with the wide variety of their extensive menu of meats. He succeeded beyond our expectations. For more about Via Brasil's upcoming events , visit www.viabrasilrestaurant.com
Join Scott from Vino Las Vegas as he joins Sommelier Jean Ricardo in the wine cellar to talk about the wine pairings and Via Brasil after the dinner
Remember the neighborhood bar just down the street ? casual , friendly great food that is creative but yet simple ? Those memorable burgers and fries that you can still taste even today ? Las Vegas has always been known for firsts but now inside The Shoppes at The Palazzo, a new FIRST has been born . FIRST Food & Bar has opened and from what we saw , and tasted will be a very big hit.
The trio of Chef Sam DeMarco, Jon Newton VP of VV Ventures and Tommy Nally of VV Ventures combined their many years of restaurant experience from all over the world to create FIRST , described as having an Industrial & Urban decor. The high, open ceilings and the tribal tattoo imagery embedded in the floor reflects its an industrial urban design.
FIRST will be a regular stop for us no matter what time of day or night. For a deatiled look at FIRST FOOD AND BAR in the Palazzo go to THE CUISINEIST
and experience the energy of opening night and meet the Chef and owners of this very unique culinary venue
Celebrity Chef Mario Batali celebrated the Green Restaurant™ Association certification of his three restaurants: Carnevino at The Palazzo and B&B Ristorante and Enoteca San Marco at The Venetian by bringing the first-ever Farmer’s Market to The Palazzo. “Bet on the Farm: Sustainable Food and Wine” welcomed local green farmers to The Palazzo. On display were be fresh and sustainable produce such as tomatoes, cucumbers, and honey .
Many people who visit Nevada assume it is an arid desert and incapable of producing any types of produce. The Palazzo's waterfall atrium was the scene of the Palazzo's first ever Farmers Market. Seven local farmers showed off what southern Nevada can produce. Items such as quail , chicken, duck ,eggs, apricots , peaches , figs , tomatoes , honey ,strawberries , raspberries and blueberries were located throughout the atrium area to sample this sustainable produce and products.
For a very in-depth look at the World's Largest Green Building , Chef Mario Batali's three Green Restaurants and the Palazzo's first Farmers Market go to our Premiere Culinary site ,
to see history in the making
The Palazzo showed off its bling at a multi-event evening for the Lili Claire Foundation. Simon G Jewelry , David Alexander and several Grammy award winning artists came together for a memorable evening in support of a very important cause.
The Lili Claire Foundation is an organization helping families with children living with neurogentic conditions such as Williams’s syndrome, Down syndrome and autism. The Foundation aims to ease the challenges families face through numerous programs, services, and resources centers located in
Simon G is a family owned and operated manufacturing jewelry designer, in its 26th year of business. Noted for staying a head of the curve in terms of design, Simon G designs are recognized by the incorporation of various precious metals combined with natural fancy colored diamonds. In 2008, Simon G won six coveted JCK Jewelers Choice Awards. In addition to their loyal consumer following, Simon G Jewelry has been the brand of choice on the red carpet for many celebrities including the Kardashian Family, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Miranda Lambert, Taraji P Hensen, Keely Bronson, and Rebecca Romijn.
For more information about David Alexander visit www.davidalexanderfashion.com
Renowned restaurant RAOs launched its signature wines in Las Vegas with a media dinner attend by a "who's who " of Las Vegas writers and critics. Winemaker Robert Summer of Strawberry Ridge wines was on hand to show off his award winning wines.
Robert Summer is a music industry executive who's past achievements have been president of RCA records and Sony music International. Robert and his wife Susan are avid art collectors and own the Vineyards at Strawberry Ridge in New England.
In in the 1980's that Susan and Robert Summer enjoyed the luxury of a residence in Tuscany and traveled frequently to the adjoining Chianti region. In 1992, as open land became available on a property adjoining their home in Warren, Connecticut the idea of starting their own vineyard was becoming a reality.
A French chardonnay clone was selected to start them off on their objective to produce a high quality wine that would meet the standards of discerning wine lovers.
The Vineyard at Strawberry Ridge is located on 22 acres of hilly terrain overlooking Lake Waramaug in northwestern Connecticut. Until September 2007, production was limited to the award winning "Ascot Reserve" Chardonnay, a wine styled after the great white wines of the Burgundy region of France, and the "Ascot Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon that derives its special quality from a blending of west coast and east coast cabernet. They have also just released their "Ascot Reserve" Merlot produced from selected grapes of the 2005 Napa Valley vintage. They keep everything hands on as they conduct crush, barrel aging and bottling at a facility in North Stonington, Connecticut.Now, more than 10 years later, this very special project has matured and Ascot Reserve Chardonnay is receiving national recognition. In 2005 the vineyard introduced the first vintage of Ascot Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. Distribution has now extended beyond Connecticut to 9 states, and the wines can be found on the wine lists of prestigious restaurants throughout the country.
Where else can you enjoy the view from the world famous nightclub PURE overlooking the Las Vegas Strip and rub shoulders with many celebrity chefs including Bobby Flay, Cat Cora, Kerry Simon, Rick Moonen and enjoy wine, beer, specialty cocktails and passed hors d’oeuvres ? The answer is Bon Appetit's Vegas Uncork'd !
In 2008 Las Vegas became the fourth city to be profiled by the authors of the Michelin Guide , the very prestigious restaurant guide book to the world. This year, the 2009 guide features 140 restaurants and 32 hotels. Bon Appetit Magazine declared Las Vegas one of the top 5 restaurant cities.
In 2009, two Las Vegas restaurants were awarded with a five-star rating by the Mobil Travel guide . Alex at the Wynn resort and Joel Robuchon at the MGM Grand. Other award winning restaurants such as Bellagio's Le Cirgue ( 6th consecutive year ) and Picasso ( 8th consecutive year ) and Caesars Palace's Guy Savoy have all taken their place amongst the worlds best.
Vegas Uncork'd shows off Las Vegas's more than a decade climb as one of the top centers for fine dining in the world. This trend shows no sign of stopping with more premiere Chefs and guests coming to Las Vegas to sample the best the world has to offer.
Bon Appetit , with it's 3rd Vegas Uncork'd has taken its place as one of the premiere Culinary events in the world and grown into an event that sets a very high bar. We can only look forward to the 4th Bon Appetit Vegas Uncorked as we have no doubt the bar will be raised even higher
From the cut of Chef Guy Savoy' s knife to open the first bottle of Champagne to the last sip of Champagne with Chef Megan Romano's confections , The 3rd Vegas Uncorked will be remembered for a long time.
Congratulations Bon Appetit and all of the people who put this premier event together. Cheers ! , and we look forward to see you all again next May !
Perhaps Culinary history was made when
a lineup of some of the most legendary French Chefs in the world , including Daniel Boulud, Alain Ducasse, François Payard, Guy Savoy and David Werly, offered their views into why Vegas has the hottest French chefs in its kitchens. Bon Appétit editor-in-chief Barbara Fairchild hosted the discussion along with special correspondent Alan Richman and Las Vegas restaurant expert John Curtas.
Bon Appetit's Vegas UnCork'd provided many opportunities for foodies to savor and enjoy culinary dishes and meet the creators of some of the best cuisine in the world. The "French Connection" provided the rare opportunity to interact with the best French Chefs in the world.
This was a very special opportunity where guests were given the opportunity to write down a question for this prestigious panel. One of the first questions asked was "Why are you here in Las Vegas" ? The overall answer from the panel was that Las Vegas is constantly changing and despite what may be happening elsewhere , the people come to Las Vegas to seek out great food.
This panel discussion provided insight into these great French Chefs. They love the competition as it brings out the best in them . "Fusion is Confusion" from the great Chef Daniel Boulud emphasized that great French cuisine is basically simple. The other point that echoed from the panel was that Las Vegas is not saturated with fine dining and will not disappear but get even better with competition.
When you assemble these great Chefs and have a open honest discussion you can't help but be in awe of what you are seeing and hearing. Not only did guests have the opportunity to interact with this great panel but also tasted the craft of renown French Chef David Werly the Executive Chef of Le Cirque at the Bellagio .
David Werley's delicious treat of Vacherin of Foie Gras, Rhubarb Compote Fresh Strawberry & Lava Salt and
Citrus infused Salmon Gravlox, Spot Prawn Cucumber Bloom & Cream Fraiche
was mouth watering. It was a real experience to be around these great French Chefs in a Panel discussion that perhaps has never been done before. Bon Appetit's Vegas Uncork'd really pulled out all the the stops to bring world wide culinary talent together as only they can.
Caesars Palace brought to Las Vegas the one-and-only Rao’s, the 110-year-old, 10-table, East Harlem Italian restaurant, considered by many as the ultimate New York dining experience.
Rao’s has been called a “culinary national treasure,” widely acclaimed for its authentic, southern Neapolitan Italian cooking and its home-style family ambiance. It was honored with a pinnacle three stars from New York Times . Rao’s at Caesars Palace is its only location outside of New York and opened its doors in December 2006.
One of the many Vegas Uncorked Master Series Dinner's was held at RAOs at Caesars Palace. Renowned Chef Carla Pellegrino and Frank Pellegrino Jr showed off their wonderful restaurant and some classic Italian artistry in the kitchen to its guests.
The always delightful Chef Cat Cora , Bon Appetit's executive chef was on hand to host the event and mingle with the guests .
Greeted with Champagne as we entered this classic restaurant , the first thing we noticed was the gorgeous Caesars Palace pool. RAOs patio provided a relaxing venue as we enjoyed the Champagne. We then entered the dinning room with great anticipation of the dining experience we were about to have and found the tables were beautifully decorated with rose petals for a touch of class.
We took a look at the menu found a nice variety of classic Italian seafood, pasta , and beef dishes paired with none other than the renown Antinori wines. Chef Carla and Sommelier Crista really teamed up for what was going to be some great pairings of classic Italian dishes and wine.
MILLE FOGLIE DI FUNGHI E FONTINA:
Puffy pastry stuffed with mushroom ragu and Fontina cheese
PROSCIUTTO E MELONE
Parma prosciutto-wrapped honeydew melon balls
SALMONE & ENDIVE
Salmon mousse, endive and salmon roe
There are more Master Sommeliers in Las Vegas than any other city in the world. 18 Master Sommeliers call Las Vegas their home.
According to the Court of Master Sommeliers, the entity that certifies and educates master sommeliers, there are less than 100 professionals who hold the title Master Sommelier in North America. There are 158 master sommeliers world wide.
The Bellagio Resort has established the record for the most Master Sommeliers at a single property. Jason Smith is the properties Director of Wine , Robert Smith of Picasso and Joseph Phillips of Michael Mina .
We have had the pleasure of meeting many of the Master Sommeliers here in Las Vegas . Jason Smith at one time was the country's youngest Master Sommelier. As Director of Wine at the Bellagio Jason overseas 32 venues and leads wine education for 3500 service employees and is responsible for hiring and training an unprecedented 15 sommeliers including two other Master Sommeliers.
Jason did not just " fall" into his current position. After attending the renown Culinary Institute of America Jason realized he had a passion for wine. Before he was 21, Jason was cellar master at the 21 Club in New York city became a sommelier. Jason later refined his skills in such acclaimed restaurants as The Little Niel, Charlie Trotter's and Michael Mina.
Jason then became a Master Sommelier after years in the industry , a rigorous exam composed of Wine Theory, Service and of course, Blind Tasting. The title of Master Sommelier takes years to achieve and requires passion and dedication that few can posses
Vegas Uncorked gave its guests a unique opportunity to taste selections from around the world as Jason guided them through a behind-the-scenes look at the methodology and rationale behind blind tasting from a Master Sommelier.
Join Scott from VINO LAS VEGAS has he speaks to Master Sommelier Jason Smith at Vegas Uncorked about the Bellagio and his remarkable rise to the top of his profession.
There is nowhere else can you experience the exciting Las Vegas food and wine scene all in one place, in one night than the Vegas Uncorked Grand Tasting .
If you could only choose one event to attend , the Vegas Uncorked Grand Tasting would be the one. We strolled around the classic beautiful pool at the Caesars Palace Resort sampling culinary delights from many of the world's best Chefs.
We have said for years that Las Vegas has become a culinary center in the world. If one had any doubts about that then the Vegas Uncorked Grand Tasting would have changed your mind. Where else in the world could you see Chefs Daniel Boulud, Guy Savoy, Joel Robuchon and Paul Bartolotta walking amongst the guests and serving their dishes ?
In addition to these legendary Chefs, rising star Chefs like Adam Sobel, Zach Allen and Carlos Buscaglia were side by side with Chefs like Bobby Flay, Cat Cora and Kerry Simon. Even Actor Kyle MacLachian from the TV hit show "Desperate Housewives " was in attendance enjoying the great food and wine.
Bon Appetit has done it again for the third straight year with a wonderful Grand Tasting . You cant but be in awe of the whole experience as you walk and sample dishes from world renown restaurants like Ristorante di Mare at the Wynn, Mario Batali at the Venetian , Mix by renown Chef Alain Ducasse at the Mandalay Bay , Aquaknox at the Venetian, RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay, Daniel Boulud at the Wynn, Switch at Encore, Guy Savoy at Caesars Palace and of course Joel Robuchon at the MGM .
Join VINO LAS VEGAS as the world comes poolside to Caesars Palace for the Grand Tasting . Lets enjoy some food, speak to some of the guests and of course spend some time with these incredible Chefs from around the world.
Until next year, Bon Appetit !
The renowned Chefs of Vegas Uncorked got together along with the public for a Blackjack Tournament and some recreation.
Encore's Europen pool provided the background for this great Tournament with total cash prizes of $ 10,000.
This was a great opportunity for the public to play along side their
favorite Chef or for those who just wanted to watch, Vegas Uncorked and ENCORE provided an open bar featuring Patron Spirts.
The Red Carpet started this off with Culinary legends like Joel Robuchon , Daniel Boulud, Rick Moonen , Alex Stratta and many others stopping to met and greet the guests
Multiple James Beard award winner Chef Paul Bartolotta had a very good month winning his second James Beard award a few days before he won the Vegas Uncorked Blackjack Tournament
RAOs Executive Chef Carla Pellegrino tried her blackjack skills and showed that this event was about having fun as well.
The tournament brought out a who's who's of celeberety Chefs from all over the world.
Daniel Boulud, Daniel Boulud Brasserie
Paul Bartolotta, Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare
Kim Canteenwalla, Society Café
Tom Colicchio, Craftsteak
Bobby Flay, Mesa Grill
Jean Joho, Eiffel Tower Restaurant
Hubert Keller, Fleur de Lys
Kyle MacLachlan, (celebrity co-host)
Mary Sue Milliken, Border Grill
Rick Moonen, RM Seafood
François Payard, Payard Pâtisserie & Bistro Caesars Palace
Carla Pellegrino, Rao's Caesars Palace
Joël Robuchon, L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon
Richard Sandoval, Isla Mexican Kitchen & Tequila Bar
Theo Schoenegger, Sinatra
Alex Stratta, Alex
Jet Tila, Wazuzu
Laurent Tourondel, BLT Burger
David Walzog, SW Steakhouse
Vegas Uncorked has many Venues and all types of events that provide fun, education, great food, wine and spirits for its guests. The Blackjack tournament is chance to have some fun and mingle with some of your favorite Chefs along side the beautiful pool at ENCORE Resort and Casino.
When we heard about the Vegas Uncorked interactive luncheon we expected to watch these great chefs at work preparing some of their signature dishes and we were right. But, we had no idea that we would have the opportunity to cook with them ! This event allowed us to put on our aprons and cook with an all-star lineup of Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Las Vegas chefs at this incredible interactive luncheon. We assisted in preparing our meal with instruction from award winning chefs Paul Bartolotta, Daniel Boulud, Marc Poidevin and Alex Stratta.
After all of our hard work was done we sat back and enjoyed some great deserts prepared by pastry chef Frédéric Robert. Bon Appétit editor-in-chief Barbara Fairchild, special correspondent Alan Richman, restaurant editor Andrew Knowlton, and features editor Hugh Garvey were all present along with Elaine Wynn to top off this great afternoon of cooking.