September 29, 2012

Vegas 2012: Fremont Street

One thing that I didn't see last time was old Vegas - Fremont Street. It was a bit on the old and smoky side, but the huge projection canopy was super impressive. it really added to the festive atmosphere.

And that's it for Vegas! I just realized I never posted the pictures from my trip to the Dominican. Yeesh. I'll do those after the cruise.

Posted by JAY at 09:32 PM | Comments (0)

August 27, 2012

Vegas 2012: Stratosphere

We did the Stratosphere again, but the only ride I went on this time was this one, which I find kind of relaxing - well, except for the girl who spent the entire ride screaming next to Rob. They also had a new ride this year where you jump from the top to the bottom along cables. We were going to do that one, but even though there didn't seem to be a lineup, apparently you need to book it in advance and we didn't have enough time to stay.

Posted by JAY at 09:17 PM | Comments (0)

August 26, 2012

Restaurant: Sage (Las Vegas)

Sage was awful. That sounds strong, but I really hated it. AND I had dragged about 10 people there, because they were too frugal to go to é or Robuchon. So THEN I had to pretend to not hate it, because some of them were OK with it and I didn't want to impinge on their enjoyment, while feeling guilty that this had been their fine dining Vegas experience.

The food was somewhat one-dimensional. The bison terrine amuse bouche - salty, like liver pate on a spoon. The artichoke salad was just salty and acidic - there was nothing rich or sweet to cut the acidity. My main course of pan roasted fluke was similarly acidic - doused in lemon and served with super tart apple. The peanut butter and chocolate dessert was fine, very sweet and quite rich, but at least different textures and flavors. A parting shot of caramel hot chocolate was so sickly sweet that I couldn't do more than taste it. It tasted like melted Werthers Originals... with added sugar.

I just... I don't know. I think I enjoyed random burgers more than what I had here. It's had some rave reviews from the folks at Chowhound, so maybe it was just this particular menu. In retrospect, the menu was only $50, so compared to the $100 Gallagher's, maybe it wasn't that bad a value.

Aria, Las Vegas

Posted by JAY at 12:28 AM | Comments (0)

August 24, 2012

Restaurant Review: Gallagher's Steakhouse

This was a bit of a disappointment - I went with the recommended "21-day dry aged signature sirloin". It was large, but that was about it. It was pretty chewy - I've had better grocery sirloin steaks off of Trevor's bbq. And that seemed to be the universal opinion of everyone who ordered it. People who went for different cuts were happier with their meals (but then, filet mignon will pretty much always be tender). Sides were expensive but comparatively good.

Still, for around $100 bucks, I'd prefer The Keg as better value (and I don't eat at The Keg because it's not great value).

Gallagher's Steakhouse
3790 Las Vegas Blvd S, New York New York Hotel and Casino
Las Vegas
NV 89109

Posted by JAY at 10:46 PM | Comments (0)

August 22, 2012

Vegas 2012: Aria

This time around, we stayed at Aria, which was super luxurious. The rooms were not as spacious as The Hotel was, but everything was super modern. I roomed with Sven, who was pretty much the perfect roomie - sleeps like a log (so me snoring/showering/reading isn't an issue), doesn't snore and doesn't shower too often. That last one doesn't sound like a plus, except that it leaves the shower open for my use three times a day (morning/afternoon/before bed).

On the day that we left, Sven, Joe and I relaxed by the pool, which was nice but nothing as crazy as the pools at The Hotel/Mandalay Bay. I didn't bother swimming, just caught up with online news on the Kindle.

Posted by JAY at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

August 21, 2012

Vegas 2012: Valley of Fire

After the ATV trip, we stopped in the Valley of Fire, where we clambered around the rocks surrounding the Visitor's Center.

Posted by JAY at 09:41 PM | Comments (0)

August 20, 2012

Vegas 2012: ATV

Sean and I went ATVing the last time we were in Vegas (and I think he's done it again since then, maybe twice!) but we went again and it was a lot of fun. This time was a lot more challenging - it was more of a hilly-trail than a touring trail. Fun for money this is one of the best values.

Heh, towards the end of the tour, I took a wrong turn that resulted in Renato and I falling behind Rick and Frank, who were a bit slow. Renato was NOT happy with me. :)

Posted by JAY at 11:53 PM | Comments (0)

August 19, 2012

Vegas 2012: Hoover Dam

We stopped at the Hoover Dam as evening approached, we didn't have time to tour the inside (it was closed). Even from the outside though, it was pretty impressive. It was quite a hike up from the bottom to the top.

Posted by JAY at 11:44 PM | Comments (0)

August 18, 2012

Vegas 2012: Shooting Range

On the way back from the Canyon we stopped to go to the bathroom and there was a "shooting range". We all tried shooting a variety of automatic weapons. Not sure this was quite worth it for me - my eyes were giving problems and I was having trouble using the sight.

Posted by JAY at 11:37 PM | Comments (0)

August 17, 2012

Vegas 2012: Grand Canyon

We took a very bumpy ride out to the Grand Canyon, which was awe-inspiring in scale. There were no guard rails and people were going right to the edge for photos, sometimes hanging their feet off. Crazy. I wouldn't get within 2 body lengths of the edge.

Sven and I did go out onto the glass-bottomed sky bridge that you can see suspended over the canyon in the top left of the photo, while some of the others went on a helicopter ride into the canyon. So we got the view, but without sacrificing sanity!

Posted by JAY at 10:03 AM | Comments (0)

August 16, 2012

Vegas 2012

Yes, I'm totally late in posting about Vegas - in fact, I've been on a Mediterranean cruise since then! I went to Vegas in March for Sean's 40th birthday with Dom, Renato, Joseph, Rick, Sven and Frank.

Sean arranged to have us picked up at the airport by a stretch limo thing. I've already posted about some of the restaurants I went to, so you can tell where my priorities were :) I'll post a few each day (I'm backdating from October here...)

Posted by JAY at 12:20 AM | Comments (0)