99% Food, 1% Skin

First 21.5 hours in Las Vegas

Yeah! Las Vegas!

We were infrequent travelers to Las Vegas (last time was probably 5-6 years ago), and it felt like everything changed so much every time we went — new places to walk to, to eat, to look at.

Although the first priority for this trip was shows, specifically Cirque de Soleil’s KA, and the Penn and Teller Show, no trip was complete without great food!

Since we had 43 hours total, rapid expansion of our stomaches were required; thank goodness we walked everywhere, at the least, we tried to increase our output for the input we enjoyed.

Every casino we walked through was still in Chinese New Year mode.

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WP_20150301_19_17_25_ProFirst night’s supper, we dined at Julian Serrano Tapas, came highly recommended by our friend.

Julian Serrano Tapas turned out to be not the most authentic, but tasty enough.

The food came out at lightning speed, as if the restaurant already knew what we were going to order.

Highlight was the cobia, calamari and the fisherman’s soup.

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Top: Cobia fish — Bottom L: Fisherman’s soup — Bottom R: salmon cake

The calamari a la plancha was simply grilled, fresh, tender and awesomely garlicky.

Generous amount of seafood was used in the fisherman’s soup, with the nicest saffron flavor, a condensed version of the ocean was captured all in a bowl.

I never had cobia fish before; it was a firm white fish with a texture and degree of fattiness between sea bass and cod.

This preparation yielded crisp delicious skin, drizzled with garlic oil, with tomato and dry pepper, slightly spicy and tasty.

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L Top: duck salad — R Top: white anchovies — L bottom: spinach — R Bottom: calamari

The duck salad was a surprise.

I did not expect a piece of formed fried croquette…it was extra crispy outside but melt in the mouth inside with deep, savory duck meat and caramelized onions — so very good, and a nice contrast with the light salad with citrus dressing and the sweetness of fig sauce.

White anchovies was nice but the bread was soaked with oil and soggy.

We ended our dinner with Churros and spicy chocolate — chocolate was excellently dark although not very spicy, the churros were too narrow, fried too crisp and too much sugar around.

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It was unfortunate that we were hurrying off to the Penn and Teller show, otherwise, I would have tried their suckling pig that takes 45 minutes to an hour to prepare; if I had known, I would have called ahead.

Penn and Teller show that night was exceptional: exciting, captivating magic tricks after magic tricks.

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We still often wonder, “how did they do that?”

Next morning was occupied with trying to get same day ticket for the KA show.

For convenience and taking part in the buffet scene, we went to Wynn’s buffet for brunch; it was quite uneventful and the food was so so — felt like I wasted a good meal quota.

DH and I basically loaded ourselves up with fibers, minerals and vitamins by eating tons of vegetables, fruits and having their fairly delicious orange juice; we joked that it should make up for other meals when we had less fibers.

We proceeded to Honolulu Cookie Company to purchase their delicious shortbread with Hawaiian twist.

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The stores in Las Vegas are the only stores in the US outside of Hawaii, must stock up!

My favorites are the cute pink dark chocolate lilikoi: unique, guava-like fruit flavors with a hint of tartness paired really well with the deep dark chocolate, in a buttery crunchy short bread background; and chocolate Kona coffee was made with 100% Kona coffee, tasty, with strong coffee flavor and smooth.

Next stop, Jean Philippe Patisserie.

There was no chance I could fit anything in my stomach after the buffet, I decided to buy desserts for after the KA show.

WP_20150302_13_40_08_ProThe large chocolate fountain display at the small store was impressive; the display of desserts were even more grand.

Aside from pastry, there was gelato, chocolates, sweet and savory crepes.

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I picked a fruit tart, a chocolate mousse dessert called chocolate intense, and a chocolate éclair.

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The fruit tart turned out to be one of the best I had.

Buttery, sturdy tasty crust, a divergent from the eggy, vanilla-ey smooth custard cream; the lovely delicate fresh fruit on top was just icing on the cake.

The chocolate intense had a perfectly smooth ganache, and something nutty cocoay thin brittle inside with a cake bottom; surprisingly with the very deep dark chocolate and European chef preparation, the chocolate intense turned out too sweet.

Chocolate éclair was , on the other hand, out of this world: nice chocolate flavor pastry cream that was light in sweetness and in texture, and the pastry part was chewy, fresh, perfect vehicle to hold the cream, layered on top with bitter dark chocolate ganache.

I wish there is an éclair like that in Seattle, it was phenomenal!

Julian Serrano on Urbanspoon

Jean-Philippe Pâtisserie on Urbanspoon

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