las vegas - bouchon vs b&b

as i mentionned previously, on my 1st night in vegas, i visted BOUCHON which was in itself a fantastic experience.  the restaurant is such a faithfull reproduction of a paris bistro that being in paris here now, i am amazed at how much being there made me feel being here....

the food was fantastic, i had a starter of oyster paired with laurent-perrier champagne (brut) which was fresh, typical, and a very delicious accompaniment to my oysters. 

i then had their special of the evening which was a beautiful beef bavette served on a bed of red cabbage and bacon sauce.  the first bit was incredible, an explosion of flavours, i closed my eyes and felts nirvana...  this was pared with a very tasty syrah TOR CARNEROS DURELL '03 specially selected by mr keller.  it was what can one expect of a high qualoity shiraz with an additional complexity of savoury spices (cardamon, white pepper, black pepper).

on the 2nd night, i invited friends to try MARIO BATALI'S B&B RESTAURANTE.  i was excited.  i was looking forward to something that i had booked 1 month piror.  i read HEAT which talks about him so much and i wanted to experience first hand what ''molto mario'' is all about.

my verdict: i will go back to BOUCHON for sure on my next trip to vegas, but will try other restaurants before i return to B&B.

jim asked me why on FACEBOOK (jc viens).  simple, the music was so obnoxious, i could not hear myself talk, let alone taste the food in my mouth.  secondly, the snotty door girl, whatever her title is was so arogant, she made me cringe (in asia we say lose face).  i mean, it is batali who is famous, NOT HER.  then our waiter asked me if i wanted to hear the sommelier's recommendation.  i said yes as i had heard their wine expertise is very good.  well she came to our table without knowing what we were eating and only suggested that we drink the wine from joe bastianich's winery (who is also owner of b&b).  she did not suggest anything else and was so busy generally that in fact seemed that she could not careless about giving us advice on this matter.  either by the look of us, she thought we knew nothing about wine, or this was a crass way too go for more margin. come to think of it, she was perhaps there for show, isn't it what las veags is about?

talking of which.  3 weeks ago at la ciau de tornavento in piedmonted, we had a gaja sori di lorenzo 1990 which we paid in the restaurant euro 420 for it.  i wondered why the 1989 of the same wine was offered usd 1300 in b&b.  really...

mind you, the pasta was very very good.  1000% what i was expecting.  but the rest was ordinary.  i ordered the rabbit which was prepared in 4 different ways (meaning the same rabbit was served in 4 pieces and each piece beingprepared differently)  that, although an interesting culinary experience, was quite an anti-climax because each piece were absolutely not as good as the other one.  a matter of personal taste you will say.  well, yes, but why serve such a dish in that case?  my guest also thought there main were a let down for various reasons and everyone agreed that the pasta and the desserts were the best dishes of the evening.  to wash down this food, we had a LORENZO BEGALI AMARONE 1999 which we paid 3 times the listed price in wine searcher and was actually not very good and felt a little bit acetic on the palate.  what made me cringe here what that prices on the wine that list started at about usd 150 except for those from joe bastianich's winery.

celebrity has a premium you will say?  well, this is indeed a learning experience for me and i will stay away from those overexposed celebrities from now on.  OVER-EXPOSED AND OVERRATED, that is what i think and all my guests including myself felt let down in some ways.  were our expectations too high?  it was ordinary, period. we indeed had a las vegas experience: the house always win...