Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Vegas Vacation Part 4

As mentioned in yesterday's post, while in Vegas we ate at The Henry four times for breakfast.  On Wednesday I had a chilaquiles scramble (crispy tortillas, peppers, onions, cilantro, chorizo and queso fresco), and Christopher had the buttermilk pancakes which were served with delicious, hot syrup.

On Thursday I had the pancakes, and he had eggs, bacon, potatoes and toast.  We got a side of sausage too:

On Friday I had to have the smoked salmon avocado toasties again, because I loved them so much when I had them a few days prior:

Another place we visited more than once was Milk Bar.  We shared cereal milk ice cream a couple times (with Corn Flake crunch topping):

Crack pie soft serve with chocolate chips, which wasn't as good as the cereal milk soft serve:

A cereal milk milkshake:

And a cookie:

Twice we stopped in to the secret pizza place in the hotel for a slice of pizza.  It was pretty good!

This pizza place is not listed on the website, and is down a narrow (for Vegas standards) hallway, with no sign or anything.  Unless you're looking for it, you'd likely never stumble upon it.  However, enough people have heard about it, that it has a super long line in the evening.

We also tried a slice of pizza at Five50 Pizza in the Aria.

It was great!

We spent time by the pool each day:

One day for lunch we went to Jaleo in our hotel, which is a Spanish tapas restaurant.

I ordered the lunch tasting menu (three tapas plus I added the paella option), and Christopher ordered two individual tapas, and then we just shared everything.

The tasting menu choices I picked were the apple and fennel salad with Manchego cheese:

Seared scallop with romesco sauce and parsley oil:

Grilled chicken thigh with ajillo sauce and black garlic:

And vegetable paella:

The two dishes Christopher chose were anchovy stuffed olives, and Iberico ham:

There were some interesting little liquid olives, which were made using molecular gastronomy.  They were like eating a bubble, and were basically entirely olive juice.  They were a neat surprise.

Iberico ham is as amazing as we were hoping it would be.  It's from the free-range, acorn-fed, black-footed Iberico pigs of Spain.  It's not cheap, but it was worth every penny.

They served it with garlicky, tomato toasts, which were perfection.  We almost ordered another ounce of the pork, as this dish was that good.

We flew home on Friday after five nights in Vegas.  Airport lunch in the Molson Brewhouse included beef dip, and a burger with goat cheese and pickled beet.

Both were really good.

We got home around 6:30 p.m., which was nice, as we still had a whole weekend ahead of us, and a couple of fun things to look forward to for the weekend.

Overall we had a wonderful, relaxing summer vacation.

Did you get away at all this summer?  
Do you have any trips coming up?

Monday, August 21, 2017

Vegas Vacation Part 3

We really enjoyed the casual restaurant The Henry in the Cosmopolitan, and visited it for breakfast four times.  I loved their massive coffee cups, which rarely had to be re-filled.  I don't know why more restaurants don't have larger coffee cups, as it would save time for servers.

The first day we went to The Henry was Tuesday, and I had smoked salmon avocado toasts, which were soooooo good.

Herb cream cheese, smooth avocado, smoked salmon, shallots, radish, and pea shoots over chewy toasted harvest bread - a delicious combination.

After breakfast we had some pool time!  It was blistering hot out, so we only lasted about an hour before we couldn't take it anymore.

Lunch was at Holsteins, a burger and shake joint in our hotel.  They brought us popcorn right when we sat down:

And then we shared one appetizer (ahi poke tostadas), and a kobe beef burger with rings:

In the evening we went to our favourite restaurant of all time, Lotus of Siam.  This restaurant is off the strip (about a $15-$20 cab ride from our hotel), and the amazing chef Saipin is a James Beard award winner.  If you visit this restaurant, you have to order from the Northern section, or from the chef's choice section.  Well you don't haaaaave to, but if you don't you will be making a mistake.  Take it from me, Anthony Bourdain, and anyone else who knows this restaurant, the Northern Thai food is their specialty.

We ordered four dishes to share, which was a lot of food, but we knew we had a fridge and microwave, so we wanted enough for leftovers.

Our favourite appetizer is nam kao tod, which is the only thing we ordered that is not on the Northern or special section, but that's because the appies are in their own section.  It is amazing.

It is crispy rice with sour cubed pork sausage (wow), cilantro, green onions, ground chili, ginger, peanut, and lime.  It's sour and salty, and crispy, and absolutely phenomenal.

We tried something new to us from the Northern section called thum ka noon, and it knocked our socks off.  It was made with shredded young jack fruit, ground pork, tomatoes and spices.  From the description I would never have thought to order this, but Christopher insisted, and am I ever glad I trusted him.  This will be a must-order for us from now on.  I have no idea what jack fruit tastes like, and although it was in this dish, I couldn't pick it out or tell that there was fruit in it (I guess because I don't know what it's supposed to taste like), but whatever it was that I was tasting was amazing.  The texture was like pulled pork, and we ate it with sticky rice.

The last two dishes are also mind-blowingly good.

They were both from the chef's choice section, and included crispy duck panang:

And khao soi braised short rib:

Ahhhh, I wish I were eating this food again right now.

If you go to Lotus of Siam, just do yourself a favour and order all four of these dishes.  You can thank me later.

This restaurant is in a strip mall, and isn't in the best area, but it's more than worth the cab ride.  You absolutely need reservations, as it's always packed, even thought it's huge.

Fast forwarding to today ...

Today is my mother-in-law's birthday 
Happy birthday beautiful!  We love you!

There is also a solar eclipse today; it is slowly getting dimmer here, and we should reach 75-80% coverage in about 15 minutes.  Are you checking the eclipse out where you are? 

What is your favourite restaurant?  Do you like Thai food?

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Vegas Vacation Part 2

On Monday we were up early, and we went straight to the pool.  After hanging by the pool for a while we went for breakfast to the Overlook Grill.

The eggs were weird, and not like a typical omelet.  They were really puffy, almost like they were microwaved in a pie plate, and then just folded around the veggies.  The potatoes were good though, and Christopher really enjoyed his banana coconut oatmeal.

For an afternoon snacky lunch we shared a burger topped with an egg.

We wanted to save room as we had big dinner plans!  In the evening, after getting dressed up, we wandered over to The Bellagio and explored for a while.  Sarah Jessica Parker was in her shoe store helping people try on shoes, and mingling with the customers as they checked out her new shop in the hotel.  We weren't shopping, so we just snapped a couple photos and kept going, but it was neat to see her in person.

For dinner we went to Julian Serrano's restaurant Lago, which is a tapas-style Italian restaurant.  Our table was outside, directly over the water of the Bellagio fountains.  Lovely!

Christopher told me to order whatever I wanted and surprise him, so I did all the ordering for the two of us, choosing six tapas for us to share.

First up was burrata:

This was our first time having this cheese, and we both enjoyed it.  It was spread over toasties.

The next dish I chose was salmon sashimi with crispy caper.

After that were two dishes, potato gnocchi with lobster, and crab with artichoke and arugula.

The final two tapas were tomato braised meatballs, and braised duck with cheesy polenta, and a butter truffle sauce.

What a meal!  Dessert was back in our own hotel, where we shared a little cereal milk ice cream from Milk Bar.  We also picked up some juiced greens to take back to the room for the morning.

Have you ever had dessert from Milk Bar?  
(There are locations in NY, Toronto, and Washington DC as well.)  I am hooked on the cereal milk ice cream.   

Do you like tapas-style dining, or do you prefer to order an entree?