Cinco de Mayo Celebration at Lindo Michoacan

Cinco de Mayo lands on a Tuesday this year, so we had to celebrate early this weekend. One of our favorite places to celebrate is at the best, and most authentic, Mexican restaurant in Las Vegas, Lindo Michoacan.

lindoLindo Michoacan

We love sitting outside on their patio under shady umbrellas. It was in the mid-80s, but we were comfortable in the shade.

For the start of our celebration, we ordered house margaritas on the rocks, a refreshing and delicious match to the tasty chips with salsa and bean dip.

margaritaMargarita on the Rocks

Drinks: Margarita on the Rocks, Rich and Kathy

Starter: Chips with Salsa and Bean Dip, Rich and Kathy

chipsChips with Salsa and Bean Dip

Appetizers: Fideo Soup, Rich and Kathy

soupFideo Soup

Entree: Carne Asada Tacos, Kathy

tacosCarne Asada Tacos

Entree: Carnitas a la Coca Cola, Rich
Carnitas in a Coca Cola sauce made with dried pasilla chiles, fresh garlic, black pepper, cloves, my Mom’s secret spices, and Coca Cola.

carnitasCarnitas a la Coca Cola

Summary

Lindo Michoacan is perpetually rated as the best Mexican restaurant in Las Vegas. And no wonder, it is authentic. The margaritas are certainly some of the best around, and the salsa and bean dip are the best anywhere.

We always look forward to the fideo soup. Now soup may not sound too interesting, but this soup is so flavorful, you don’t want to miss it.

(Kathy’s Comment: For a non-soup lover, I actually really like this – yum!)

Kathy had the carne asada soft tacos that were full of flavors, including the well-seasoned and perfectly cooked beef.

My absolute favorite dish is the Chile Colorado, but since I don’t want to order that every time we visit, I chose the Carnitas a la Coca Cola. The meat is a little sweet, as you can imagine, but when you wrap it in a corn tortilla with some beans, rice, and guacamole, it’s fantastic.

Kathy tried the carnitas, and they were too sweet for her without the tortillas.

We skipped dessert this time, but we enjoyed finishing our margaritas while we relaxed in the peaceful atmosphere and finished our chips and dips.

Another successful Cinco de Mayo celebration!

Lunch at Bonefish Grill

We have a history with Bonefish Grill. It is based in Tampa Bay where we lived for several years. And we used to visit the restaurant in nearby Henderson, NV when it was opened. It’s closed now, and there is a relatively new Bonefish Grill in Town Center here in Las Vegas. This was our second visit to this location.

bonefish-grill-interiorBonefish Grill

The good news about this location is that it is one of the few that serve lunch/brunch. Last Sunday after church, we ventured out to Bonefish Grill during brunch.

When we arrived, we were seated in a booth near the front corner. Our server Drew quickly introduced himself and reviewed the menu with us. We ordered from the lunch menu instead of ordering brunch items.

We were looking forward to enjoying our favorite drink here, the Ultimate Infused Dirty Martini.

Drinks: Ultimate Infused Dirty Martini, Rich & Kathy
Ketel 1 Citron vodka infused with olives for 3 full days. Served ice cold in a frozen martini glass. The best damn dirty martini ever!

martiniUltimate Infused Dirty Martini

Appetizer: Ahi Tuna Sashimi, Shared
Premium sushi grade, sesame-seared rare with wasabi + pickled ginger

tunaAhi Tuna Sashimi

Entree: Bang Bang Shrimp® Tacos, Kathy
Three warm tortillas, our signature Bang Bang Shrimp, lettuce, tomatoes + sour cream

bangbangBang Bang Shrimp Tacos

Entree: Rainbow Trout, Rich
Delicate in flavor, this Idaho Trout has a tender, flaky texture. Served with Pan Asian sauce and Mango Salsa

troutRainbow Trout

Dessert: Key Lime Pie, Shared

pieKey Lime Pie

Summary

Our server was very friendly and helpful. When I couldn’t decide on a sauce to have with my trout, he suggested the pan Asian sauce and the mango salsa, both on the side. Our drinks came quickly and were fabulous. One of our favorite dirty Martinis.

We waited quite a while for our tuna appetizer, and finally had to flag down our waiter. He had forgotten the appetizer. It arrived soon afterward, complimentary and it was quite delicious. We asked that the entrees not be served while we enjoyed our appetizer.

The entrees arrived immediately after our last bite of the tuna. Kathy had the Bang Bang Shrimp tacos that are the signature dish here. They are touted as being spicy. They weren’t. Kathy says they were tasty, but not as great as the hype.

I had the trout. There are not many restaurants that serve trout, so I usually order it if I see it. I’ve had the trout here before, but they no longer serve the chimichurri sauce I’ve enjoyed before. The two sauces on the side were nice, but I preferred the pan Asian sauce. I really missed the chimichurri sauce.

We were pretty full by the time our entrees were finished, and we were going to resist dessert. But when Drew offered us a piece of Key Lime Pie, we couldn’t resist ordering a piece to share.

The huge piece of Key Lime Pie was incredible. We were really stuffed after dessert, but it was so worth it.

It was great to be back at Bonefish Grill again, enjoying a memorable meal together, toasting each other with one of the best Martinis ever.

Fall Food & Wine Fantasy, Saratoga Springs

Who: Rich and Kathy
Where:
WDW
Resort:
Saratoga Springs
When:
October 2015
Why:
Food & Wine Festival

We watched this MouseSteps.com video about the Amphicar at The Boathouse opening at Disney Springs and we totally want to do this. Of course, I want to ride in the red car. Tomorrow is the soft opening. We also hear it’s about $100 – gotta do it once.

So now we’re thinking that, budget willing, we’d like to stay in a 1-bedroom villa at Saratoga Springs. We used to hang out there quite a bit when we lived nearby – it’s where I celebrated my book releases – walking the path from Marketplace at Downtown Disney to Saratoga Springs.

WDW1972 used to stay there a lot when the Comedy Warehouse was around on a permanent basis in Pleasure Island.

Here’s a video tour of a 1-bedroom villa from AllEars. It looks a lot like the one stayed in at the Boardwalk.

Fall Food & Wine Festival Fantasy: Passporter 2015

Our Passporter 2015 arrived yesterday – woo hoo! They really do a fabulous job of putting together an amazing guide to Disney World.

With so many changes to WDW, we figured it would be nice to have some kind of guide and it’s really fun to add this to our Passporter collection. One new thing we noticed is that Morimoto is coming to Disney Springs – we’re still waiting for it to open in Las Vegas.

When Passporter came along in 1999, it was perfect timing for our first trip to WDW together in May ’99. I used to get Birnbaum’s Official Guide to Disneyland/Disney World every year whether I needed it or not. I’ve long stopped buying those books and I didn’t think we’d ever buy a Passporter again after living there twice, but I think it’s time.

We’ve been thinking about our last time living in Florida and missing some of the things we used to do and places we used to go. Like Habanero’s Mexican Grill near Seminole Town Center, Bonefish on State Road 434 in Longwood, and even American Signature Furniture in Altamonte Springs where we bought our last bed. It’s funny the things that come to mind – places you thought were in the past but you start to long for.

I wonder what’s next for us.

What’s Up for Fall? Cruise or Disneyland

Last night we were watching Chopped and one of the ingredients was Wild Boar and Rich started remembering the Wild Boar Andrew Sutton made for him at Napa Rose.

So then we started talking about how much better Napa Rose is when you’re staying onsite. So… one thing we could do is an onsite Disneyland this fall if we can’t get to WDW. If so, shouldn’t we leave Napa Rose for when we can stumble back to our room? lol!

But suppose we don’t get there this fall – shouldn’t we do it for my birthday in July? We think so. But maybe not the Chef’s Counter.

The other option is perhaps another cruise. When Rich and I first started cruising together, we sat out on the deck and so caught up in the excitement, we were making plans to cruise on all of our vacations – lol!

RichRich on his first cruise dreaming of his next cruise
(Celebrity Century)

Reading cruise reviews and browsing our photo albums (remember those?), I stumbled on a picture of another dress, worn after the dress I thought was my last dress.

rkcruiseThe dress I thought was my last dress
(our first cruise together on the Celebrity Century)

dressLast time I wore a dress
HAL Volendam

One more note on the dress front, the good news is I won’t after to do any alternations on my new dress – it fits perfectly even though I bought it online.

Two4Disney Goes Tiki or Oh Baby, the Poly

With all of this new stuff going on at the Polynesian Village Resort at WDW, I can’t help but recall sitting with friends over a meal at WDW and one of them unexpectedly saying, “Oh baby, the Poly!” Yes, I’m sure its popularity has just skyrocketed with the opening of DVC Villas (although only studios are available – with connecting doors, no less) and outrageously expensive Bungalows.

No matter what your critiques are, the new Poly is a fabulous blend of the old Coco Palms on Kauai (seen in Blue Hawaii) and the overwater bungalows on Bora Bora in Tahiti. I stayed in a Kings Cottage on my first trip to Kauai in the early 1980s. Rich and I had considered honeymooning on Bora Bora but decided on Maui instead – shorter flight. :)

HumuhumuThe Humuhumunukunukuapua restaurant at the Grand Wailea on Maui
where we honeymooned

As a side note, after we sold our old new house and before we moved into our new new house in Orange County, my family and I lived in an apartment called Kings Kauai. It had many of the Hawaiian-style Longhouse-type features. SoCal was full of Tiki back in the ’60s and restaurants, bars, apartments, and even housing styles were very Aloha.

kingskauaiSoCal Apartment in the 60s – similar to Kings Kauai

cocopalmsCoco Palms, Kauai

thepolyThe Poly, WDW

lawnchairKing’s Cottage, Coco Palms, Kauai

konavillageKona Village Resort, The Big Island

bungalow_origBungalows, the Poly, WDW (AllEars)

What I love about this, besides the view and location, is the ceiling. It so reminds me of my King Cottage at Coco Palms. So sad that Hurricane Iniki destroyed the resort and nothing much has been done to it since. It was so fabulous. The cottages had a similar thatched roof ceiling with an outdoor shower.

I couldn’t find a photo of the interior, but if you ever watch Blue Hawaii, you can see exactly what I’m talking about – Elvis’ character stayed in one. The biggest downside is that this resort wasn’t located on the beach but across a busy highway from the beach.

Kona Village Resort on the Big Island (had a friend who honeymooned there) with its own lagoon was also destroyed by hurricane. I wonder how these Disney bungalows will fair in a hurricane?

disney-polynesian-reopening-bora-bora-bungalows-dvcOverwater Bungalows at the Poly
(AllEars)

boraboraUnbelievably Beautiful Bora Bora

boraborainsideBora Bora Bungalow, Tahiti (similar to The Poly at WDW)

Other Tiki and Thatched Roof Favorites:

tidepoolsTidepools Restaurant at the Grand Haytt on Kauai (we celebrated Rich’s birthday there)

FAfrontFiesta Americana, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (where I stayed in PV in the early 1980s)

PVpoolbarFiesta Americana Swim-up Bar

So now after this Polynesian/Mexican Tiki Thatch Roof pictorial, I don’t know if I want to go to Disney World, Hawaii, or Tahiti. We might have to *settle* for the Disneyland Hotel and Trader Sam’s. In the meantime, we’re cruising to Mexico!

tradersam

Trader Sam, Disneyland Hotel

Aloha and Buenos Noches!