Las Vegas: Tasting Menu

We had a convention to go to in Las Vegas for work, so decided to make the best of it and turn our little work trip into a foodie adventure. As boring as Las Vegas can get for people who aren't into clubs and gambling, it has an amazing and ever changing selection of restaurants. Regardless of your budget and taste, there is something to be found that will blow your socks off and due to the competition, restaurants are either always evololving or changing or making every attempt to up their game to stay relevant. We have a pretty strict rule of avoiding buffets locally, as the quality suffers, but some of the buffets in Las Vegas go above and beyond average.

You really can't go wrong if you are looking for a nice bite to eat in Sin City.

After our amazing time at "The Bazaar", Jose Andres very popular restaurant in Los Angeles, we really wanted to give "E by Jose Andres" a try. E is a hidden bar inside the Cosmopolitan, with an ever changing +20 course tasting menu. While some might call the meal extravagant, it was more than just the food. It is an intimate dining experience with only 6 other patrons. We had requested a table 1 month in advance, as the hidden bar only offers two seatings five nights a week.

We were informed they were fully booked sadly. :*(

Because of this, we made plans to visit a different Josa Andres restaurant for lunch, also located at the Cosmopolitan, but on the opposite end of the spectrum, closer to "take-out" than "tasting menu" flair, China Poblano by Jose Andres China Poblano is perhaps one of the oddest fusions we have come across with Mexican and Chinese food cuisine blended together.

The Chinese food was colorful, flavorful, and a far far cry from the greasy, diebetus inducing take out chinese we were familiar with. The twenty-vegetable fried rice is highly recommended as well as the beef and watermelon dumplings.

The Mexican food however, was very underwhelming. The texture of the tacos was odd. There were no unique flavors and it tasted like what it was, meat and a sauce in a corn tortilla. The churros however, were to die for and brought back memories of the first churro that everyone has been chasing since child hood. I vowed right then and there to never eat another churro from Costco, in fear of ruining the memory.

Low and behold, as soon as we stepped out of China Poblano we received an email from the hostess at E, informing us that there had been a cancellation and we could be seated for dinner later that night! Later that night after a lot of walking around Las Vegas and work stuff we set off for E by Jose Andres.

E was a really neat experience. I recommend everyone give it a try, but come on an empty stomach. While it is just a tasting menu, the +20 course meal combined with the earlier lunch really filled us up by the end.

Our last night in Vegas we decided to hit up Sage at the Arai. We both hadn't paid much attention to this place although we both had seen it, but had heard good things about it so on a whim, decided to give it a try. It really blew away our expectations, and was much better than we had expected.

If you are in Vegas and looking for a something different, Sage is treat. If you have some time and want to try out some gastronomy tasting menus, book a seat at E, but be prepared to be told they are full. We would not recommend China Poblano, even if you are looking at just ordering Chinese food. For that, head over to the Wynn Casino and go to Red 8. It's much better Chinese food and service. If you want Mexican food, do not avoid, Javier's, which is some of the best Mexican food that I have in a very very long time. You can read about when we ate at both of these locations back in 2013 here.

If you want to read about our other dining experiences in Vegas, be sure to check out our time at Julian Serrano Tapas perhaps my favorite meal in Vegas, Holsteins which is arguably one of the best gourmet burgers on the strip, and Wolfgang Puck's CUT.