In a recent post, I mentioned the fabulous celebrity restaurants in Las Vegas. So if any of you are planning a side trip to Las Vegas from Disneyland, we thought you might want to take a peek at the amazing meal we had at Bobby Flay’s for Rich’s birthday (we’ll continue that celebration at Disneyland).
After my fabulous birthday dinner (described in One Perfect Evening), how could we even come close to something as spectacular for Rich’s birthday? We mulled over several of our top choices, but in the end, we knew we had to do Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill at Caesar’s Palace. There are more celebrity chefs in Las Vegas that Elvis impersonators these days, and having experienced Puck, Emeril, and Mario Batali, Bobby was our obvious choice. Let’s just say this, “He had us at the corn muffin.”
When a local makes a reservation at any of the Strip restaurants, the staff knows it must be for a special occasion. And the service is just as terrific as if you had just flown in from New York. That’s the great thing about Las Vegas. Before we moved here, we often chose to vacation in Las Vegas for the same reason we would vacation at other resorts: great service, great pools, great dining, great entertainment, and overall great value for the money. But nobody does service quite like Vegas. They make the average joe or jane feel like they’re somebody special.
We arrived early and were seated by the open-flame kitchen and began our “adventure of the taste buds.” You often hear judges on “Iron Chef” say that the tastes were layered – that they tasted one flavor upfront and were hit by the heat in the back of the throat at the end – especially when they’re judging Bobby Flay’s food – it is so true, but more on that later.
First off they brought us a basket of bread and the blue corn jalapeno muffin was amazing. We were hooked on Bobby’s food right then and couldn’t wait to try the rest of the meal. We ordered two Mesa Grill Margaritas and they were so fresh and tasty, I would have to say these were the best Margaritas I’ve ever had. In fact, this was the best southwestern meal I’ve ever had and that’s saying a lot because it’s my favorite cuisine.
Here’s what we ordered:
(R) Goat Cheese Queso Fundido: Rajas + Blue Corn Tortilla Strips
(K) Blue Corn Pancake: Barbecued Duck+ Habanero Chile – Star Anise Sauce
(R) Ancho Chile-Honey Glazed Salmon: Spicy Black Bean Sauce + Roasted Jalapeno Crema
(K) Mahi Mahi Tacos (pictured at right): Black Bean Salsa, Avocado Relish + Meyer Lemon-Habanero Sauce
(R&K) Lemon Meringue Creme Brulee + Sundried Strawberry Biscotti
While everything was over-the-top delicious, the most amazing adventure of the taste buds was the salmon that Rich ordered. When I took a bite, my first reaction was that I didn’t recognize this flavor, but it was delicious. Then as the taste bud adventure continued, the salmon began to reveal itself to me, along with the heat, and it was just incredible. I had to have another bite to do it all over again.
We’ve been spoiled forever. Del Taco will never be the same. 🙂