Saturday, August 05, 2006

Culinary Adventures in Las Vegas: Fleur de Lys

Fleur de Lys

There are so many culinary adventures possible in Las Vegas. You would need weeks to visit all the top restaurants, buffets and casinos, but the truth is that everyone get sick of Vegas after about three days. There is so much to see and do, but trust me, a week is too long. I've visited Vegas on three separate occasions and I still haven't been to every casino. They are all essentailly the same, although some are more impressive than others, with lion habitats, or shark tanks, fountains or pirate ships. Each has it's own claim to fame. I suppose it is the same for the restaurants.

This time we stayed only two nights in Vegas, so our culinary opportunites were limited. On the first night, we went back to the buffet at Paris, since we enjoyed it so much last time. It was mostly the same, and the food as quite good. However, the dinner location for night #2 was hotly debated. As the three of us were walking through the MGM Grand (which is huge, BTW), we stumbled upon Joel Robuchon's new restaurant. I would have loved to eat there, but $375 each was just too much for our budget. However, at L'Atelier next door, (Robuchon's lower-cost restaurant) the prices were more reasonable. Paul was a few meters away, standing in front of Nobhill. We had a dilemma- who gets to pick the restaurant? We had to leave it up to G, who was having a hard time deciding between his wife and his best friend. Arguments ensued. We narrowly avoided acting like sulkly babies when I put my foot down and picked a totally different restaurant in a casino down the strip: Fleur de Lys in Mandalay Bay.

The room was just beautiful. Hundreds of fresh roses decorate one wall. The service was fantastic. G and I had the three course tasting menu and Paul decided to go with four courses. The nice thing about the tasting menus, was that you could choose any appetizer, main course and dessert to put it together yourself.
My Menu:
Oven Roasted boneless Quail, with "fondant" of celery root and hazelnut, foie gras torchoon and mushroom compote.
Colorado lamb loin and lamb shoulder cannelloni with eggplant caviar, atrichokes Barigoule and oriental lamb jus.
Fruit minestrone with basil sorbet and orange jus.

G's menu:
Chilled Maine lobster salad with watermelon granite, balsamic vinegar reduction, and vannila oil.
Kobe beef Fleurburger Rossini
Sauteed foie gras, Black perigord truffles, truffle sauce on a shallot and truffle brioche bun
Pistachio souffle

Paul's menu
Artisan foie gras au torchon with rhubarb-rosemary compote, rhubarb chips, honey grenadine.
Slow roasted Alaskan King Salmon with parmesan herb crust, artichkoes, lemon, capers and beurre noisette.
Filet mignon with braised ox tail tortellini, potato gratin, baby spinach and red wine reduction.
Pistachio souffle

The food was excellent, with only a couple comments to make. My quail dish and Paul's filet were under-seasoned. G's Kobe beef burger was a little dry. Other than those few comments, we enjoyed the food immenesly. Our bill, with one glass of wine, one espresso and one tea came out to $380 after tip. There was also an extra cost for the kobe beef burger in addition to the $79 cost for three courses. I highly reccommend this restaurant to anyone visiting Las Vegas. I shouls also mention they offer a 5 course vegetarian tasting menu for $75. Here are a few pictures of the meal, the camera flash was on the fritz, so not all the pictures came out well.

Amuse bouche of smoked salmon in a fennel cream sauce.
My menu:

Roasted quail

Lamb loin

Friut minestrone

White rose tea

G's menu:

Lobster salad

Kobe beef burger

Pistachio Souffle

Paul's menu:

Foie Gras au Torchon

Alaskan king salmon

Filet Mignon

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