A Little Hawaiian Vocabulary - We're here on the Big Island again (visiting Kona), and it struck me that knowing a few Hawaiian words can come in handy while visiting the islands. Aloha ...
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
On our third day in Vegas, we started out with breakfast at Planet Dailies again (egg white omelette for me)...
And had some cocktails at Trader Vic's (yet another Hawaiian themed spot attached to our Hotel) in the afternoon. My 'Menehune Juice' was a nice rum and fruit juice drink that came with a little plastic 'Menehune' doll. (The Menehune are a race of small people believed by ancient Hawaiians to have inhabited the islands before them, and to have achieved amazing engineering and architectural feats long ago).
But the highlight of the day, which we both were looking forward to ever since we made the reservation, was dinner at Joel Robuchon's L'Atelier. It's a new restaurant at the MGM Grand from 'Chef of the Century' Joel Robuchon, and features bar seating that enables patrons to sit facing the open kitchen, and watch as dishes are prepared (and hear the chef holler at people in French). We went for the 'Discovery Menu' ($148 each), featuring 9 delicious tasting courses. Everything as amazing. Seemingly odd flavor pairings like strawberry, basil and olive ice cream turned out to be truly inspired creations of a chef who clearly understands flavor. The service was attentive but not invasive, giving us plenty of time to enjoy each dish and our wine selections. Below is the complete menu (sans the final coffee service, which we both opted out on). The main course included the option of beef or poultry - so I went with the former and Dan chose the latter. His truffle mashed potatoes, he said, proved why truffles are so highly regarded. Besides that course, I believe Dan enjoyed the asparagus cappucino the most, but picking favorites was difficult when each bite was such a delight to the palette.
Cucumber gelee, tarragon cream, cumin yogurt
Le Thon Rouge
Big eye tuna with tomato infused olive oil
Main lobster in a gelee of vegetables topped with chilled leek soup
Scallop cooked with seaweed butter, curried cauliflower
Capuccino of green asparagus with parmesan
John Dory filet with baby calamari and artichoke
Free-range quail stuffed with foie gras and served with truffled-mashed potatoes
French-style hangar steak with fried shallots
Strawberries with basil infusion and olive ice cream
Pistachio parfait with marinated rhubarb and Muscat sorbet