Sirk TV On-The-Scene Interview: Chef Johnny Church Of PJ Clarke’s/Caesars Palace [Las Vegas Restaurant Week 2011]]
The predilection of Las Vegas Restaurant Week resounds around the idea that world class restaurants and chefs give back a bit by offering fixed course menus highlighting some of their best dishes. The amount of venues participating has skyrocketed including highly regarded visions both on and off the Strip.
Visions change depending on the venue. The beginning starts with the ultra new balancing with the Restaurant Week soirees that bring out both the fun and interaction of the actual personalities behind the food.
Chef Stephen Hopcraft of STK currently sits atop the most wanted real estate on The Strip with his restaurant inside The Cosmopolitan, bathed in a nouveau circular style with 80s music balancing out the notion of a 54-style resurgence.
Enveloping in the structure of the fixed menu, the spicy pickled prawns offered a distinction of crispness while the sour tartness gives them a reflective balance.
The main course enticed with a signature steak revolved with seared tuna highlighted by a gentle but vivacious wasabi sauce bordered by truffle oil infused frites that simply lifted with a sense of comfort.
Ending out the third course was a flaky and delicious preserved stone fruit cobbler with the dough made on-site in the kitchen revolving within a cinnamon ice cream dollop which made the flavor pop.
Sliding in a texture of non-Restaurant Week items to sample, the tuna tartare enveloped on a crisp enhanced with its smoothness while the macaroni and cheese delighted but it was the short rib ravioli that dazzled with a melting taste that truly captured the essence of the restaurant.
Over at the newly redesigned Tropicana, the culinary scene is re-emerging starting with Bacio, the new restaurant by Chef Carla Pellegrino, bathed in white emitting to the nouveau Miami texture mirrored by the hot new day club on The Strip: Nikki Beach.
Continuing in the structure of the fixed menu, the beginnings of the Fritto Misto di Mare created an essence of crunch with zucchini mixing in a light but resounding remoulade tomato sauce before engaging in the the Cotoletta di Maiale, translated as a pan seared pork chop sauteed in hot cherry peppers providing a intensive zest to warm the palette.
Concluding with a sense of sweet enticement, the Profiterol, a pastry filled with French Vanilla gelato and topped with a warm chocolate sauce engaged and raptured the taste buds.
Adding a bit of non-Restaurant Week possibilities, the Affettati Misti antipasti allowed tenderness with proscuitto and salami but it was its garlic aged in olive oil to an insistent taste that dazzled while the Insalatina di Mare with its shrimp, lobster and crabmeat in a citronette base simmered the vision.
The Restaurant Week soirees, events with a bit of fun and a decided focus, used the notion of Vegas with the balance of the ideas and programs that it helps.
Chef Kerry Simon, known for his outreach and connection to the cause, held the official mixer at his KGB [Kerry’s Famous Burgers] outlay at Harrahs, serving his favorite comfort food while the music and raffles revolved.
Among the possibilities reflected in Restaurant Week on display was the waffle fry nachos with sloppy joe sauce and a delicately placed jalapeno along with his popcorn shrimp easily multiplied in essence with a tart lemon aioli.
The revolution of non-fixed items enveloped the view as well with Kerry’s famous Iron Chef Sliders which simply melt in the mouth along with desserts of note including expresso milkshakes and cereal infused cupcakes (think Cookie Crisp).
First Food & Bar at The Palazzo hosted the “Shuck & Swallow” event where oysters and good cheer continued hand-in-hand with the eventual winner guzzling some 146 slimy beasts in a run while the Blue Moon draft flowed in the late afternoon texture.
Wrapping out the night. “Bubbles, Burgers & Bocce” at Rao’s in Caesars Palace indulged in its notion of champagne and the intuitive possibilities of Bocce Ball as explained and progressed by two lovely referees. The tendency of a pesto topped slider melted in the mouth as the considerably addicting competitiveness of the sport made it an ideal sidetrack for late night luxury.
Late afternoon structure allows for some interesting qualities. Within The Wynn, La Cave offers a differing ambiance over the pool with the outside veranda structured in design to be cool in the summer and warm in the winter as dinner envelopes the coming dusk.
Within the fixed menu, the hamachi begins with a sense of zest surrounded by pickled chilies and a splash of lemon while the bacon-wrapped dates accompanied by a blue cheese fondue display a foundation of lovely intention that offers solace. A sliced sirloin steak, effortlessly wrapped in an embrace of mushroom fondue, follows leading into a closer of enclosed and dexterous chocolate cake.
Sliding with a vision on its non-fixed items, the jumbo lump crab lettuce cups of La Cave stand out offering a blossom of flavor surrounded by a wonder of freshness.
With the different ideas of dinner infusing intensity up and down the Strip along with a texture of both entertaining and fulfilling events to intermix the day, Las Vegas Restaurant Week continues with the ability through over 140 restaurants to offers the beauty of something for everyone.