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Issue 2 Volume 12
US $3.95




Celebrating the Spirits of Las Vegas
Events and News for the Las Vegas
Spirits Connoisseur
page 17
         Nevada Restaurant Association
    combines tradeshow forces with Catersource



  Restaurant, Hospitality, Catering and Event Professionals
                                              REGISTER TODAY!
Tuesday, February 28 • 11:00am – 6:00pm | Wednesday, Febraury 29 • 9:00am - 2:00pm
                                     Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall

• 1,000+ Booths - 80 Different Product Categories.                     • Get thousands of Fresh Ideas at the Exhibition Stages,
                                                                         Tabletop Contest and Live Ice Carving Demos.
• ACF Las Vegas Culinary Challenge.
                                                                       • Exclusive Offers and Show Specials, discounts,
• See What’s New and the latest trends for catering menus, table-
                                                                         drawings and give-aways.
  top, linens, serving equipment, software, vehicles, entertainment,
  furniture, lighting, event design and so much more.                  • Spectacular Sweets Pastry Showcase with Chris Hanmer,
                                                                         winner of Top Chef Just Desserts.
• FREE Show Resource Guide and two award-winning magazines,
  Catersource and Event Solutions.                                     • SAMPLES! Specialty foods, appetizers, desserts, wine
                                                                         and more.


      Visit our website to register for the Tradeshow and to review the complete
    Conference schedule and package options! On-site registration is also available.

                      www.catersource.com
                         February 2012




                         CONTENTS
                         FEATURES
                Cover    Las Vegas loves celebrations and whisky is one of them.
13                       The Universal Whisky Experience returns again this year
                         to the Wynn/Encore resorts for some of the best whiskies
                         and producers in the world, bringing in international
                         connoisseurs.
                         Full story can be found on page 17.
                         Cover shot and story photos are by Bill Bokelmann.


                19 Returning to Las Vegas is the Catersource Show, scheduled
                     this year at the end of February. It will co-exhibit with the
                     International Restaurant Show, sponsored by NRA-Nevada
                     Restaurant Association. The ACF Chef Association will be
                     staging an additional show event, the Culinary Challenge,
                     bringing in regional chefs for the competition.



                22 The Nightclub & Bar Show returns this year to Las Vegas, and
                     what location could be better suited for the “Hottest Show”?

16                   The NCB brings in exhibitors and attendees from around the
                     US and, in the past few years, from around the world. What
                     better way to see what’s happening in the industry and
                     indulge locally.

                     Cheers!




                Page 4                   Page 13               Page 17
                Hot Off the Grill!       The King & I          Celebrating the
                                                               Spirits of Las Vegas
                Page 6
                HR Insights              Page 14
                                         Interview with Tom    Page 18
                Page 8                   Recine                Bottles & Burgers
                Wine Talk
                with Alice Swift
                                         ACF Chefs             Page 19
18              Page 9
                What’s Brewing?
                                         January Meeting       Catersource 2012

                                         Page 15               Page 21
                Page 10                  The New Tropicana     Latenight with Ryan
                Food for Thought

                Page 12                  Page 16               Page 23
                Brett’s Vegas View       What’s Cooking?       Advertiser Index




www.lvfnb.com                        February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 3
                                                                                         The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional
                                                                                                1200 S TORREY PINES SUITE 172
                                                                                                    Las Vegas, NV 89146
                                                                                                       www.lvfnb.com

 February 2012
                                                                                      HOT OFF THE GRILL!
                         Mike Fryer                                   On a recent re-visit to the Mandarin Oriental,
                         Editor-in-Chief                          we had the pleasure to meet with the F&B Team
                                                                     and were once again pleasantly rewarded with
                         Thank you for joining us in this
                                                                     an exceptional degree of international service.
                         issue of The Las Vegas Food &
                         Beverage Professional.                    We will be featuring the Mandarin in upcoming
                                                                  issues and look forward to bringing their passion
                         For any questions, comments                         for comfortable quality to our readers.
                         or advertising inquiries please
                         email mike@lvfnb.com                             Seated with LVF&B Pro Editor-in-Chief
                                                                        are: Director of Food & Beverage Andreas
                         Bob Barnes                                 Wieckenberg, Wine Director Julie Lin, Twist
                                                                  by Pierre Gagnaire Manager Matthias Maier and
                         Editorial Director                           Communications Executive Jennifer Cornet.
                         bob@lvfnb.com
                                                                         Bottles & Burgers opens at Tivoli Village.
                                                                          Owned and operated by Double Helix Las
                                                                      Vegas, this is their third restaurant to open in
                                                                         spite of harsh times in the industry and the
                                                                       economy. Brainchild of Ray Nisi, Bottles &
                                                                       Burgers is a perfect fit for the Tivoli Village,
                         Juanita Aiello                                   classy yet comfortable and serving a great
                                                                     variety of beers and wines by the glass. Owner
                         Creative Director                            Ray Nisi is “Thumbs Up” on this one, and we
                         juanita@lvfnb.com                                               wish him well. Cheers Ray!



                                                                          The Sysco Food Show at the Cashman
                                                                            Convention Center brought in chefs,
                                                                  F&B managers & directors, as well as restaurant
                                                                      owners and operators from throughout Las
  The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional                      Vegas and Southern Utah for a flavor-filled day.
                                                                                Nice catching up with chefs like
                                                                                                Mimmo Ferraro.
  @lvfnb




  The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional welcomes letters to the editor. We are always striving to improve this publication and
  would like to know your comments and thoughts. Here’s your chance to be heard. Send your comments to info@lvfnb.com and they
  may be published in next month’s issue!
  NOTE: All submissions become the property of The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional.



 CONTRIBUTING STAFF


  Pre-Press Technician     Contributor           Contributor    Contributor          Contributor           Contributor       Contributors            Contributor
      Brandon Yan        Chef Allan Asch        Juanita Fryer   Jackie Brett       Shelley Stepanek        Les Kincaid    Scott & Elaine Harris   Ryan “Hollywood”
                                                                                                                                                     Wieczorek




     Contributors          Contributor           Contributor    Contributor          Contributor           Contributor       Contributing            Contributing
    Lucille Thaler &     Linda Bernstein       Michael Oshman   Alice Swift         Chandra Paige           Chef Jet        Photographer            Photographer
     Tony Zanoff                                                                                                            Bill Bokelmann        Rose Powell-Carver

4 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                                        www.lvfnb.com
Green Restaurant Association
                                            TM




          Since 1990


Thinking of Going Green?
       Take a strategic approach.




                a non-profit organization
                  Phone: (617) 737-3344
                 Email: gra@dinegreen.com
                   www.dinegreen.com
    HUMAN RESOURCES INSIGHTS



               By Linda
     Westcott-Bernstein                                   Workplace Violence
                                     This is a subject that most people do not enjoy thinking or talking about, however for Human
                                     Resources, Security, Safety and Risk Management personnel, it is an important one. Whenever
                                     people face multiple stressors in their lives, there is potential for emotional overload as well
                                     as irrational behaviors.
                                     Unfortunately, at any time any person may exhibit         they can speak in private, and who get them on the
            Linda Bernstein has      risky behaviors and become a danger not only to           path towards effective diagnosis and proper care.
         provided sound human        others but to him/herself. Too often we assume            Your policy should also include a sound methodology
           resources advice and      that individuals can handle change, crisis or life
       guidance to Fortune 500
                                                                                               for identifying and reporting potential situations and
      companies and others for       challenges in a rational and reasonable manner, but       for evaluating the seriousness of the incident as well
         over 25 years. She has      this can be a poor assumption. Additionally, in this      as its impact.
    helped these organizations       era of constant input, information overload, social
         review procedures and                                                                 What resources should you have available? All
       implement solutions that      media and the expectation of instant gratification, the
         are designed to reduce      resultant outcome may be one of frustration, fear and     organizations, large or small need to prepare and
  liabilities and increase their
                                     inappropriate reactions.                                  be aware of the risks of workplace violence. Every
  profits. She also assists with
     the development of human
                                                                                               employee should have access to an EAP network (via
                                     What are some of the behaviors to watch for with          their health plan) where they can speak to professionals
        capital through focused
        employee retention and       workplace violence? The obvious signs can include
                                                                                               about problems, stress, and depression. EAP stands
  training programs designed         changes in mood or behavior, agitation, anger,
    for all levels of employees.                                                               for employee assistance program, and many of these
                                     negativity, and/or frustration with others. Less
                                                                                               programs have 800 numbers where they can contact
  Linda has written a self-help      noticeable signs might include withdrawal, depression,
                                                                                               a professional at any time of day or night, and work
   book entitled “It All Comes       sadness, and confusion. However, those who act out
  Down to WE!” which offers                                                                    through problems. These programs usually include a
      guidelines for building a
                                     with violence don’t always show overt signs or give
                                     others reason to be concerned. Some individuals may       few office visits at no additional charge, so that care
  solid and enduring personal
  work ethic. You can find her       be able to cope for long periods of time or even mask     and counseling are immediate and ongoing. All along
   book on the website (below)                                                                 the way, the importance of courtesy and respect are
              or on Amazon or        those telltale signs that would otherwise raise a red
                 Google books.       flag.                                                     critical. Handling of workplace situations should be
                                                                                               private and respectful, and away from the prying eyes
                                     So, what do your policies on workplace violence need
      Phone:
                                                                                               and ears of others.
                                     to look like? First, there should always be a statement
               702-326-4040                                                                    It is important, now more than ever, that we develop
                                     on the importance of confidentiality as well as for
      Email:                         consideration and respect. One potential trigger for      a keen, watchful eye for the effects of stressors and
  LindaBernstein@cox.net             reactionary behavior may be the suspicion that they       their resulting outcomes, so that our workforce can
       Booksite:                     are a subject of ridicule or contempt. Those in need of   experience a level of security that supports everyone’s
  ItAllComesDowntoWE.com             care should have easy access to clinicians, to whom       safety and well being.



    HR
    Question of
                                   Next month’s topic: Do’s and Don’ts of Documenting Discipline
                                   Does your company practice sound discipline procedures? If not, why not? If so,
                                   what do they do that makes this difficult process effective? Explain. Send responses
                                   to LindaBernstein@cox.net
    the Month
                                   (Responses may be printed in next month’s column.)


       WANT TO ADVERTISE IN THE ONLY FOOD AND BEVERAGE-INDUSTRY
                 DEDICATED PUBLICATION IN LAS VEGAS?
                         Review rates and availability at www.lvfnb.com/advertise.htm
                                          Email info@lvfnb.com for more information.

6 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                             www.lvfnb.com
  Wine Talk
                                                                                                                                  By Alice Swift




     with Alice Swift
  Altos Las Hormigas Wine Tasting
  On January 26, I had the fortune of      should be paired with meals.                                                    Alice is teaching as
                                                                                                                           an adjunct instructor
  attending the Altos Las Hormigas         After Antonini introduced the                                                   in wine education at
  Wine Tasting event, held at                                                                                              UNLV’s William F.
                                           winery and the background behind                                                Harrah College of
  Bellagio’s Sensi, and presented          it, Pedro Parra was introduced as                                               Hotel Administration,
  by Founder/Winemaker Alberto                                                                                             while working as
                                           the terroir specialist, the only soil                                           an Instructional
  Antonini and Terroir Specialist          and terroir specialists from South                                              Designer in the
  Pedro Parra.                                                                                                             Office of Online
                                           America. Together, they formed                                                  Education. Follow
  Malbec is one of those varietals that                                                                                    her new blog site at
                                           the Altos Las Hormigas Terroir                                                  www.aliceswift.com
  is most well known for the varietal      Project, which was comprised of                                                 for the dish on wine,
  itself, rather than by wine producer                                                                                     technology, or even
                                           in-depth research into the terroir
                                                                                   The Valle de Uco Reserve had a          both! She is happy
  or region (other than Mendoza).          of Mendoza. Rather than simply                                                  to take suggestions
                                                                                   beautiful deep purple tone, with        for article topics or
  There is such a great potential          describing Mendoza soils as
                                                                                   a bouquet of roses and violets,         inquiries.
  for the grape to grow into a high        alluvial, Parra dug further and was
                                                                                   balanced by the ripe berry fruit
  quality wine product, and Altos          able to rank the various types of
                                                                                   and slight earthiness. The palate            Email:
  Las Hormigas is attempting to do         soils and terroirs for wine quality     mirrored the aroma, with the            alice.swift@unlv.edu
  just that, by focusing on not just the   purposes. In addition, Parra            addition of spices and nutty flavors.
  winemaking and the resulting wine        developed a macro-zoning map for        This may have been a New World
  quality, but beginning with the          each Mendoza sub region, as well        region wine, but there was definitely
  soil and terroir itself. Antonini’s      as a micro-zoning ranking process       an Old World twist to it, with the
  goal is to make a “good wine with        for the different profiles. This        slight barnyard and earthy aroma to
  no faults,” rather than a wine with      aided Altos Las Hormigas (ALH)          the wine. Though there was some
  good potential and structure, but        in a deeper understanding of the        tannin present, it was very smooth
  not top quality. His main goal, even     different soils, and in turn, allowed   and drinkable alone. However, my
  today, is to sell Malbec not as a        them to create excellent wines in       preference would be to pair this
  grape varietal-based wine, but as        the right terroir.                      with a fruit chutney atop a slow-
  more of the Altos Las Hormigas           I had the fortune of tasting a few of   roasted pork tenderloin. Since I
  reputation and the regions/sub-          the wines produced by ALH, and I        did not have pork tenderloin handy
  regions.                                 must say, they are some of the most     to pair my wine with, the cured
  His wines are made with all hand-        fruit-forward wines with finesse        meats and small bites provided by
  picked fruit, and a selective sorting    and elegance, and well balanced.        Sensi at the Bellagio provided a
  process. Therefore, the result is        My personal favorite wine from          great alternative. My favorite was
  a top quality wine with elegant          the tasting was the 2008 Altos Las      the curry puff pastry, which went
  tannins and an Old World feel to a       Hormigas Valle de Uco Reserva           surprisingly well with the Valle de
  New World wine. This may, in some        Malbec, which received 90 points        Uco Reserve.
  part, have to do with Antonini’s         from Wine Enthusiast. This wine         Overall, I had a great learning
  background. He is originally from        is one in which the Malbec grapes       experience of Argentina, Malbec,
  Italy, and worked in Tuscany as a        come from the riverbeds of the          and terroir, paired with great
  winemaker, working for former            Valle de Uco region (macro-zone)        food, wine and conversation. If
  wineries such as Antinori. Now, as       in Mendoza. Micro-zoning was            you would like more information
  fruit-forward as his Malbec wines        also analyzed here, and the wine        on the Alberto Antonini, Pedro
  may be, the tendency is still for        is comprised of 90% Vista Flores        Parra and Altos Las Hormigas,
  Altos Las Hormigas wines to be           grapes and 10% Eugenio Bustos           please visit them at: http://www.
  considered “food wines,” which           grapes.                                 altoslashormigas.com/

8 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                      www.lvfnb.com
                         W
                                                                                                              WHAT’S BREWING
By Bob Barnes                         hat’s on Tap
                                      Beer fest season is starting up again.       different IPA’s in the works: Mineshaft Black IPA
                                      First up is the Brews Best Beer              (a Cascadian Dark Ale with Cascade, Cluster and
                                      Festival on March 10 from 1 to 6             Fuggles hops), The Bridge Breaker (an Old World
                         p.m. at the Village at Lake Las Vegas. This is an         IPA featuring Challenger, East Kent Goldings and
                         optimal time for great weather in Southern Nevada         Whitbread Goldings hops) and his 5th Annibrewsary
                         and an opportunity to sample 70 plus brews                Ale, which this year will be an IPA packed full of
                         from more than 20 local and regional breweries.           seven different hops: Magnum, Columbus, Cascade,
                         Cost is $25 in advance or $30 at the gate. Go to          Chinook, Amarillo, Warrior and Centennial. You
Bob Barnes is a native
Las Vegan, editorial     <newvistacommunity.org> for tickets. The Village          can try them all at the brewery’s 5th Annibrewsary
director of The Las      is 17 miles east of the Vegas Strip, and just a few       bash on February 17th. Todd reports this one will be
Vegas Food & Beverage    miles from the entrance to Lake Mead National             their biggest yet, featuring live music, food specials,
Professional, regional   Recreational Area.                                        Hoppy Hour pricing all night, raffles and great
correspondent for
Celebrator Beer News     Freakin’ Frog has once again made Draft                   prices (including vacations!).
and covers the LV        Magazine’s America’s Top 100 Beer Bars list for           It’s now a lot easier to find Brewmaster Joe
restaurant scene for
Gayot.com.               the 4th year in a row. The Frog has made the list each    Pickett’s Ellis Island Brewery beers. All 9 Village
                         year since the magazine has been compiling the list       Pub locations are pouring his drafts, as well as the 5
He welcomes your
inquiries.               and is also the only establishment in Nevada to get       Metro Pizza locations.
                         this prestigious accolade. Owner Adam Carmer can
  Email:                 also boast of having the largest beer selection in the    Beer Spotlight
bob@lvfnb.com            US, with around 1,000 different beers showcased in        This month the spotlight shines on North Coast
                         the cooler. This month he’s pulling out some rare and     Brewing’s Old Rasputin XIV. Named for the
                         special taps: a keg of Dogfish Head 120 IPA, the 9%       Russian mystic, this Russian Imperial Stout has long
                         abv Norwegian Haand Doppel Dose Imperial IPA                                        been the standard for the
                         and his last keg of the 9.2% abv original Flying Dog                                style, but the numbered
                         Gonzo Imperial Porter, a 2005 vintage brewed to                                     versions are aged in
                         commemorate the passing of Hunter S. Thompson.                                      oak bourbon barrels.
                                                                                                             This special offering
                         Matt Marino at 777 Brewpub has brewed his Bev’s                                     was first produced in
                         Winter Blues, a Blueberry Wheat brewed with real                                    2006 to commemorate
                         blueberry juice and Galaxy hops for extra fruitiness,                               the 10th anniversary of
                         and Black Mud, a 10% abv imperial stout with                                        Old Rasputin. Packaged
                         organic Peruvian coffee beans. He’s also aging                                      in 500 ml (16.9 oz.)
                         some in two bourbon barrels for a later release.                                    bottles with a cork
                         Matt also has some big news. He’s moving on from                                    and wired finish and a
                         777 and joining the brewing staff at Big Dog’s                                      special commemorative
                         Brewing Company. The expansion of the Big                                           label, this is a big, bold
                         Dog’s brewery means more hands are needed to                                        beer at 11.3% abv and
                         brew more beer. That’s a good thing, and Big Dog’s                                  75 IBUs. While the
                         landing Matt is also a very good move. Matt’s an                                    regular Old Rasputin
                         excellent brewer who elevated 777 through his                                       is an explosion of rich
                         innovations and creativity, brewing numerous fun                                    roasted goodness, malty
                         and interesting beer styles over the years.                                         sweetness and cocoa
                                                                                                             flavors that constitutes
                         Tenaya Creek has released its Imperial Stout, a
                                                                                                             stout heaven, the barrel
                         9.3% abv seasonal. Its eye catching label depicts
                                                                                                             aged version sports the
                         a skull of a desert big horn sheep (Nevada’s state
                                                                                                             same characteristics, but
                         animal) and each 22 oz. bottle is wax sealed and
                                                                                                             with added complexity
                         hand dated with a bottled on date. Due to its higher
                                                                                                             of oaky vanilla and sweet
                         alcohol content, this is a beer that can be enjoyed for
                                                                                                             bourbon notes. Get some
                         years to come, if you have the will power to save it.
                                                                                                             while you can, for this
                         BJ’s Brewhouse will roll out its next seasonal brew,                                seasonal has limited
                         its Abbey Normal, a full-bodied Dubbel brewed                                       distribution, and before
                         with Belgian malted specialty barleys in the mash,                                  2010 was only available
                         Vino Blanc grapes in the kettle and fermented with                                  at the brewery in Fort
                         Westmalle Belgian yeast.                                                            Bragg, California.
                         Todd Cook at Boulder Dam Brewing has three                As always, great beer happens in Vegas!

    www.lvfnb.com                                                             February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 9
    FOOD FOR THOUGHT


Does Sake Go Well with Food?                                                                                                                 By Les Kincaid

   Today’s UlTra-PremiUm sakes are as Food-VersaTile as Table Wines.
  My thought is that only poorly made,          Sakes taste best in stemmed, tulip-                restaurants.
  inexpensive sakes are served warm;            shaped wine glasses (9-12 ounces).                 I’ve found that sakes pair as well as
  the finest sakes (called Hiyazake or          If you want your guests to enjoy                   crisp table wines with Pacific Rim-
  Reishu) are best slightly chilled. You        sakes at optimal quality, you need                 style dishes. Think of sake as a “wine
  would no more heat up a bottle of             to dispense with those square boxes                of the East” rather than a separate
  high-quality sake than you would a            or squat cups that tend to dissipate,              beverage category. Robust alcohol,
  cult Chardonnay.                              rather than enhance, the finer qualities           multilayered textures, and pervasive
  Is sake a wine? Like wine, it derives         of sake. There is even a Riedel sake-              fruit-flower-earth aromatics can take     Les Kincaid is a
  its alcohol from the conversion of            tasting glass, called Daiginjo, that               you a long way, particularly in tasting   food, wine, and
  sugars by the action of yeast. But            resembles the company’s Chablis                    menus where sakes alternate with          golf expert and
  while wine is fermented from natural          glass. Not coincidentally, nuances of              traditional wines.                        cookbook author. He
  grape sugars, sake is fermented from          mineral and terroir are just as critical                                                     hosts a nationally
                                                to appreciating the myriad sakes of                For the same reasons, fine sakes are      syndicated wine
  steamed rice, finely polished to as                                                              versatile enough to be taken out of
  much as 50% less than the original            Japan’s prefectures as they are for                                                          radio show each
                                                authentic Chablis.                                 Japanese or other Asian culinary          Thursday from
  hull size. Although the Kura, where                                                              contexts. Ingredients high in umami       7 to 8 pm. You can
  sakes are made, is usually translated         In Japan, drinking sake with sushi is              respond very well to the amino            enjoy his website or
  as “brewery,” sake naturally finishes         considered the equivalent of drinking              acids naturally found in these rice-      his broadcast at
  at around 14-17%—closer to the level          wine with grapes. The Japanese eat                 derived beverages. Seafood and sea        www.leskincaid.com
  of today’s table wines than to the            sushi as snack food, before or after               vegetables; fungi and aged cheeses;       or email
  typical beer.                                 main meals, and preferably with tea                complex, slowly evolved stocks            les@leskincaid.com
  Does sake taste like wine? Most               or beer. But they do enjoy sake with               based on chicken, veal and shellfish;
  certainly, fine sakes are closer to wine      sashimi and planning sake meals                    and the reductive aspects of braising,    FOLLOW ME ON
  than beer in body, flavor, intensity, and     around fuller-bodied foods such as                 pot au feu, dashi, nages and natural      FACE & TWITTER
  complexity. Sake has the intoxicating         pickled vegetables, pork, chicken,                 essences: any cooking process that        www.facebook.com/
  aromas of fresh honeydew, pineapple,          shellfish and fish (grilled, steamed               elevates umami sensations can make        leskincaid
  passion fruit, jasmine, sweetened             or raw), or the heartier, more rustic              food-and-sake pairing all the easier.     www.twitter.com/
  cream and vanilla bean.                       dishes found in country-style Japanese             Not only is Wine Food, so is Sake.        leskincaid




                                                                                              ®




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10 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                                      www.lvfnb.com
     AD_GenHHR_Centenn_BJ4751.indd 1                                                                                                              5/31/11 2:37 PM
      Providing fine foodservice establishments
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                   800-969-8862 • 702-473-6470 • www.santamonicaseafood.com
                               Las Vegas Sales & Distribution Office
                          3475 W. Post Rd., Ste. 115, Las Vegas, NV 89118
www.lvfnb.com                        February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 11
                                                                  Brett’s
  BY
  RESTAuRAnT And BAR CLiPS                                                                              The MGM Grand closed its Lion Habitat, a
    TV’s Chef Gordon Ramsay will open his first                                                        $9 million, 5,000-square-foot, glass-encased
  Las Vegas restaurant, Gordon Ramsay Steak,                                                           attraction as part of the overall property-wide
  this spring at Paris replacing Les Artistes                                                          renovation.
  Steakhouse.                                                                                           The General Tire Mint 400 Off-Road race will
    The Rio is opening KJ dim Sum & Seafood                                                            be held March 23-25 with the race’s creator from
  Chinese Restaurant, a sister restaurant to                                                           1968, norm Johnson, back as a consultant
  Las Vegas’ KJ Kitchen, in the space formerly                                                         and adding back features from early days.
  inhabited by Lucky Strike bowling lanes.                                                              The little known Blair House Suites near the
    Hispanic superstar known as the “King of                                                           Las Vegas Convention Center has undergone
  the Accordion,” Ramon Ayala, will debut the                                                          a $250,000 renovation in the common areas
  first Ramon Ayala Cocina & Cantina in the                                                            and 60 units at the extended-stay property.
  United States at Buffalo Bill’s in Primm, Nev.
  Ayala will perform twice a year with his first        The Chuck Jones Experience is a new                      EnTERTAinMEnT
  on Feb. 19.                                         10,000-square-foot attraction at Circus Circus              HAPPEninGS
                                                      honoring the life and work of the man who         Hip-hop artist Cee Lo Green is planning a
    Three Square Food Bank has added a spring         created loveable Looney Tunes and Merrie
  edition of Restaurant Week Feb. 27 - March                                                           modern Liberace-type show for a headlining gig
                                                      Melody cartoon characters over a career          at Planet Hollywood.
  4 where patrons dine at many of the city’s
                                                      spanning 70 years.
  best restaurants at affordable prix fixe prices                                                       The lavish “Phantom – the Las Vegas
  while helping charity.                                Gameworks, which has operated for about        Spectacular” at the Venetian with the famous
                                                      15 years on the Strip, will move to a new        break-away chandelier will close on Sept. 2.
    Bottle & Burgers by double Helix has
                                                      location after its lease expires on March 31.
  opened for lunch and dinner in Tivoli Village
  and boasts savory burgers. This eatery offers
  two pet-friendly covered patio spaces and a
  third outdoor patio designated for cigar smoking.
    McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon has
  permanently closed at the Rio.
    The Keep Memory Alive Café brought to you
  by Red Velvet Café Chef Aneesha, alumna
  of Chef Thomas Keller’s kitchen, has opened
  in the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for
  Brain Health in Symphony Park. Hours are
  weekdays and daytime.



                                                                                                       Celebrity voice impressionist Bethany Owen
                                                       A rare sculpture by Leonardo da Vinci is at     has opened her one-woman show “One Voice”
                                                      the Renaissance Galleries at The Shoppes         at the Rio in the new cabaret-style showroom
                                                      at The Palazzo. The sculpture is a bronze        called The Kings Room, which was formerly
                                                      cast from the mold of the original wax model     Fiore’s Restaurant.
                                                      and named “Horse and Rider” by world              Former Frankie Valli in “Jersey Boys,” Rick
                                                      renowned Leonardo expert Carlo Pedretti, who     Faugno, has opened a new one-man show on
    The gentlemen’s club Sapphire has remodeled       authenticated the work.                          Tuesday nights in The Lounge at The Palms.
  one of its 10 Skyboxes to honor Perrier-Jouët’s
                                                       The fourth annual Scale the Strat extreme        “Vegas Magic Theatre” is new at the Gold
  fine champagnes.
                                                      108-floor stair climb event and American Lung    Coast. What’s different is the showroom has
       ATTRACTiOn, HOTEL And                          Association fundraiser will be held at the       been separated into two rooms with a cocktail
           EVEnT nOTiCES                              Stratosphere Tower on March 3 and 4.             Magic Lounge for pre-show close-up magic.
   dale Jarrett Racing Adventure, inc. has             The Spa at The Mirage is now offering a new     The show hosted by singer-magician Ben
  moved westward and opened its Las Vegas             Yoga Among the dolphins class in a serene        Stone features a new lineup of three to four
  operation offering a NASCAR-style race              underwater viewing area within Siegfried &       magicians, illusionists and outstanding variety
  experience where passing is allowed.                Roy’s Secret Garden and dolphin Habitat.         and specialty acts.

12 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                            www.lvfnb.com
    Restaurant Review




     KING & I
  By Shelley Stepanek

  Want real, and I mean real, Thai food? With all the flavor, atmosphere and perfect service
  you would get right in Thailand? Well, it’s here, at the KING & I on Tropicana. From the
  moment you walk in the door, you are greeted with the hospitality of the Thai people. Kris
  Bujadham and his wife have owned the King & I since 1993. The restaurant has giant stones
  forming the walls and booths, with timbers lining the ceilings, and Thai wall hangings above
  each booth. Big Thai masks sit at the entrance on a shelf, overlooking incoming guests. For
  those of you who have lived in Las Vegas a long time, you will remember the place as Kung
  Fu West. This great little jewel is the perfect place to test all your senses with the extreme
  differences in the many dishes they prepare.

  The King & I seats approximately 50 people and when we visited, all the booths were filled
  with both locals and tourists. They know good food when they try it.

  We started with a Singha beer and Chicken Satay marinated in coconut milk and curry sauce
  with peanut butter sauce and cucumber salad. Three different pepper sauces came out, of
  which we sampled all. Quickly following was their Galangal Chicken Soup, kept warm in
  a flaming pot. Usually called “Coconut Soup,” this has always been a favorite of mine. The
  Spicy Mint Chicken was a new dish for me, combining exotic flavors of mint and rosemary.
  Another of their most ordered dishes is their Pad Thai, again famous for the peanut sauce
  taste. Pad Thai is a staple constantly served. They have an extensive menu, quick service,
  and if you are a single, don’t hesitate to drop in; you will feel quite at home. Luncheon
  specials are fantastic. Don’t hesitate to order pick up. Regulars seem to show up weekly.
  Only 100% liquid vegetable oil is used and no MSG. With either Kris or his wife there, you
  will always have the warmth and experience of an owner proud of his establishment.




               Open 7 days a week, Mon -Sat. 11 a.m.-to 9:30 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. -9 p.m.
             Call 702-739-8819. 1107 E. Tropicana. Delivery service available. Please, no checks.
                         Voted “The Best in Las Vegas” in 1996, 2003, and 2004.

www.lvfnb.com                                                                     February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 13
                             Tom Recine
                               Vice President of Food & Beverage and Retail
                               Tropicana Las Vegas

                               By Bob Barnes



                             I recently met up with Tom Recine, the Tropicana Las Vegas Vice President of Food & Beverage
                             and Retail. Tom filled me in on some exciting changes and new venues coming soon to the
                             newly transformed South Beach-themed resort. Here’s Tom’s update:

                             Biscayne Steak, Sea & Wine is now rated             with house DJ’s Bad Boy Bill and Donald
                             #1 on the Vegas Strip on Trip Advisor, and          Glaude; and on Saturdays Unleashed, the club
                             Bacio by Carla Pellegrino is quickly becoming       brings in top entertainment from throughout
                             one of the premier restaurants in Las Vegas.        the music and entertainment industries.            Tom Recine with Bacio Owner/Chef Carla Pellegrino.
                             Carla continues to wow our guests with her          We recently renamed Café Nikki to The Beach
                             vibrant personality and spectacular food                                                               SPF will open. Named SPF for “Swim, Play,
                                                                                 Café. The cuisine is traditional American fare
                             offerings. She’s also in the running for round      with a modern twist, with a well-rounded menu      Flirt,” it will define the next generation of Las
                             2 of the Eater’s 4th Annual Hottest Chef in         featuring items such as matszah ball soup,         Vegas pool parties and elevate the Daylife
                             LV Contest (to vote go to vegas.eater.com/          Asian specialties, quesadillas, burgers, New       experience to the next level. We plan to
                             archives/2012/02/02/hot-chefs-round-2-              York steak and chicken fried steak. Hours are 7    expand and upgrade the existing area, making
                             jenkins-pellegrino-charton-mcclain.php).            a.m. to midnight daily and a breakfast buffet is   it THE place to spend the weekends dancing
                                                                                 served from 7-11 a.m.                              to the biggest DJs and hottest performers while
                             RPM Nightclub opened on New Year’s Eve
                                                                                 Coming this summer, located in the middle          relaxing in a comfy cabana and sipping on the
                             and has quickly become known for providing a
                                                                                 of the casino floor, we will open a new bar        coolest cocktails.
                             great party. The club’s motto is, “It’s all about
                             the party.” Each week special events take place,    and lounge called Chill’m, which will feature      As you can see, the NEW Tropicana Las
                             including ST*RFKR Wednesdays Industry               cocktails and frozen drinks.                       Vegas continues to be a delicious experience
                             Night from 10:30 p.m. till 4 a.m.; WTF Fridays      Opening in late March, our new beach club          all around!



                        ACF Chefs Dinner/Meeting Hosted by South Point Hotel
Photos by Chef Joey Campos




14 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                                                                   www.lvfnb.com
T R O P I C A NA                                         Overseeing Biscayne, Bacio and all other F&B
                                                         aspects, is George Bargisen, director of food and
                                                         beverage and executive chef at Tropicana. A world-
                                                         class chef with over two decades of experience,
                                                         Bargisen honed his craft at Hyatt properties in
                                                         Florida, Massachusetts and New York, spent                    Coming
                                                                                                                      in March
                                                         five years as executive sous chef at the Fairmont
                                                         Scottsdale Princess in Arizona, and learned the art
                                                         of tropical seafood preparation as executive chef at
                                                         the Fairmont Hamilton Princess in Bermuda. He
                                                         recently served as director of culinary operations
                                                                                                                         2012
                                                         at the Las Vegas Hilton and executive chef at Rio
                                                         All Suite Hotel & Casino Las Vegas.
                                                         If indulgence defines Las Vegas, dessert is
                                                         definitely on the menu, and that’s why guests
                                                         appreciate Meegan Lancaster, executive pastry
 A meal in a great restaurant can turn a tourist visit   chef at Tropicana. Lancaster graduated first in
 into a memorable travel experience, even transform      her class at the prestigious Culinary Institute of
 a first date into a lasting relationship. Tropicana     America with a degree in baking and pastry, and a
 Las Vegas recently underwent a transformation of        bachelor’s degree in hotel administration from the
 its own – a $180 million initiative that infused the    University of Nevada, Las Vegas. For a decade,
 landmark with the exciting pulse and sensual style      her innovative approach has earned acclaim across
 of Miami’s famed South Beach neighborhood.              Las Vegas, including at Daniel Boulud Brasserie
 Its “all-new” spirit is evident in Tropicana’s          at Wynn Las Vegas and Le Cirque and Osteria del
 two main dining destinations, Bacio by Carla            Circo at Bellagio.
 Pellegrino, and Biscayne Steak, Sea & Wine and          While Tropicana guests can get a taste of its $180
 in an acclaimed Food and Beverage program led           million transformation at Bacio or Biscayne, they
 by a team of award-winning professionals.               can get a feel for it inside the hotel’s all-new
 Recently opened this past April is Bacio by Carla       rooms and suites, which offer the breezy comfort
 Pellegrino.     This charming Italian ristorante        of a beach getaway with their bright plantation
 has already delighted foodies with its authentic        shutters, custom furnishings and plush amenities.
 Italian recipes. Along with crisp and bright salads     For late night fun, RPM Nightclub features first-
 like baby arugula, red onions and Rosso Bruno           class bottle service, three bars and today’s hottest
 tomatoes, and such classic antipasti as arancini,       stars and top recording artists, as well as a variety
 guests can enjoy fresh-made pastas in slow-cooked       of world-class DJs, dancers and specialty acts. The
 sauces as well as veal scaloppini, sea bass, New        sleek and stylish venue also offers table games
 York strip steak and other fare.                        and roulette inside an elite gaming lounge. For
                                                         great entertainment, guests can get energized
 With meticulous attention to detail, Carla              by Recycled Percussion, as the “Americas Got
 Pellegrino brings true Italian spirit to Bacio. The     Talent” Finalists use an array of unusual objects
 Italian-raised chef, known by television audiences      as instruments to create an interactive performance
 for beating Bobby Flay on his “Throwdown!”              that will literally bring the audience to its feet,
 Christmas special, came to the U.S. in 1997, where      or learn about Sin City’s inglorious past at the
 she met and married Frank Pellegrino Jr., co-           interactive Las Vegas Mob Experience. Casino
 owner of Rao’s in Harlem. Together they opened          regulars will love the Trop Plus Players Club,
 Baldoria in New York and a second Rao’s in Las          the most generous rewards program in Las Vegas
 Vegas, where she led the culinary team as executive     with numerous benefits and discounts. And a new
 chef before joining Tropicana Las Vegas.                Race and Sports Book lets guests wager during
 Biscayne Steak, Sea & Wine reinterprets the             live sporting events, and via mobile device from
 classic Vegas steakhouse with a South Beach             anywhere in the resort.
 flair. Its USDA-certified Angus beef choices            Tropicana Las Vegas...
 range from tender filet mignon to seared prime          a delicious experience all around!
 rib to deeply flavorful rib eye, t-bone and New
 York steaks, along with generous cuts of lamb,
 veal and Kurobura pork chops. Biscayne is also
 distinguished by Safe Harbor-certified fresh fish:
 from banana leaf-wrapped mahi mahi with tropical
 succotash to oven roasted snapper with rum jerk
 butter sauce. Of course, for those who can’t
 decide, there’s always the surf & turf, or a four-
 course tasting menu & wine pairing.

www.lvfnb.com                                                                               February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 15
                         WHAT’S COOKING

                       Public House at The Venetian-
                                                                                                                                                      By Bob Barnes



                       a Shrine to Beer
                       The first clue that Public House
                       is a shrine to beer beckons at the
                       entrance-the “Wall of Beer,” a large
                       window displaying the more than
                       200 beers served. Once inside you’ll                                                                                        Bob Barnes is a native
                       unearth more evidence, such as the                                                                                             Las Vegan, editorial
                       motto emblazoned on the back of                                                                                                 director of The Las
                       the chairs, “United we stand, pint in  Green Flash Hop Head Red. A good          crafted menus at the company’s other      Vegas Food & Beverage
                       hand,” and a bar outfitted with 24     way to taste several different beers      restaurants: Holsteins, LBS and             Professional, regional
                       tap handles and three small barrels    is to order a flight of four 5 oz.        The Barrymore. At Public House he               correspondent for
                       from which cask beers are dispensed.   tasters. Russell has thoughtfully put     has designed an upscale traditional         Celebrator Beer News
                       Further confirmation arrives in the    together five suggested groupings,        pub menu, which includes several                and covers the LV
                       person of Russell Gardner, Nevada’s    with self explanatory titles of Full      selections prepared with beer, such          restaurant scene for
                       first and only certified beer cicerone Palate, Lighter Side, Hop Trip, Big       as Welsh Rarebit topped with a                         Gayot.com.
                       (a sommelier for beer). Russell        & Dark and Belgians. A rare treat         cheddar-beer sauce sourced from the            He welcomes your
                       selects and oversees the massive       is to experience a cask conditioned       locally-brewed Tenaya Creek IPA; or                    inquiries.
                       selection and shares his ample beer    beer; its lack of carbonation and         the 48-hour Short Rib braised with
                       knowledge in assisting guests in       refrigeration allows the full flavor of   Black Butte Porter. The beer centric       Email:
                       making beer worthy choices. He’s       the malt and hops to dance on your        menu is executed by Chef de Cuisine           bob@lvfnb.com
                       easy to recognize, just look for his   palate. Pouring during my visit was       Thomas King, whose impressive
                       trademark handlebar moustache.         Firestone Walker Union Jack, and my       resume includes positions previously
                       The beer list Russell has studiously taste buds definitely got a work out.       held in the kitchens
                       chosen is undeniably stellar. The As for the décor, think traditional            of some of the finest
                       menu lists all beers by alcohol tavern meets contemporary pub.                   establishments     on
                       percentage, serving size, style and The entryway is reminiscent of an            the Vegas Strip,
                       price. Speaking of price, you’ll find upscale members-only club library,         including     Switch
                       that the beers are priced two to three equipped with shelves lined with          at Encore and Le
                       dollars less than other establishments books and comfortable couches and         Cirque and Osteria
                       with praiseworthy beer lists on the chairs. The dining room walls are            del Circo at Bellagio.
                       Vegas Strip. Our helpful cicerone has adorned with images of Colonial/           Pastry chef Rebecca
                       also created four blends to which he Revolutionary America, with some            Bills         presents
                       devoted much research and applied his whimsical touches thrown in, such as       her     artistry    in
                       creativity in both design and in well a picture of a monkey in a business        presentation and flavor, with desserts
                       chosen names. The Sweet Blonde, a suit and depiction of a red, white             that include a Chocolate Stout Layer
                       mix of Franziskaner, Chimay White and blue Firecracker Popsicle on the           Cake incorporating two dark beers,
                       and Hornsby Cider is a fairly sweet ceiling. Classy walnut wood tables           Lost Coast 8-ball Stout and Joseph
                                                                                                                                                    Public House
                       concoction that is designed to appeal and plush leather booths and chairs        James Red Fox Imperial Stout
                                                                                                                                                   at The Venetian
                       to women for whom beer is not their contribute towards an ambience               (another local brew); and an Irish
                       first chose of beverage; for coffee that is simultaneously relaxed and           Coffee Cheesecake prepared with
                                                                                                                                                    702-407-5310
                       lovers, Morning in San Francisco elegant. Space for private groups is            Jameson Irish Whiskey that’s topped
                                                                                                                                                  PublicHouseLV.com
                       combines Anchor Brewing Small                                                    with a hazelnut crumble.
                                                              courtesy of two private dining rooms,
                       Beer and Lost Coast 8-Ball Stout with                                            Further after dinner enjoyment
                                                              one seating 20-30 and another that                                                     Public House is
                       coffee, making it a perfect breakfast                                            awaits via a selection of more than
                                                              can accommodate 8-12.                                                                open from 11 a.m.
                       beer; or my favorite, the Hopped &                                               100 bourbons, cognacs, single malts,      until 11 p.m. Sunday
                       Confused, a contrasting medley of Block 16 Hospitality Executive                 dessert wines, digestives and ports.       through Thursday
                       Uinta Dubhe Black IPA, the slightly Chef Anthony Meidenbauer is the              Lovers of the grape aren’t ignored          and 11 a.m. until
                       sour and spicy Jolly Pumpkin Bam mastermind behind the culinary                  here. The well-rounded 15-page             midnight on Friday
                       Bière (a Farmhouse Ale style) and menu creation, and he previously               wine menu is a virtual tour of the            and Saturday.
                                                                                                        world, with a selection of vintages
                                                                                                        from acclaimed wine regions in             More information
                                                                                                        California, Washington, Italy, France,    and reservations are
                                                                                                        Spain, Chile, Argentina, Australia,           available at
                                                                                                        South Africa, Lebanon, Austria            PublicHouseLV.com
                                                                                                        and Germany. Also on the list is             or by calling
                                                                                                        something you won’t often find, a           702-407-5310.
                                                                                                        selection of meads, which are made
                                                                                                        from fermented honey.                        Public House
Photos by Sue Boyles




                                                                                                        It’s very cool to find a restaurant on      is on Twitter @
                                                                                                        the Strip serving an exquisite beer         PublicHouseLV
                                                                                                        selection backed up with equally          and on Facebook at
                                                                                                        refined cuisine, all set in an elegant,   www.facebook.com/
                                                                                                        relaxed environment.                         publichouselv

 16 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                                             www.lvfnb.com
 Purple Valley Imports Offering
 Unique Independent Single Malts
 Purple Valley Imports is an            unique award-winning world            for the North American market,
 independent importer company           class independently produced          the Single Highland Malt Scotch
 that has grown exponentially           spirits that are hand-picked by       Whiskey 37 Year Old is a cask of
 over the past three years with         owner Raj Sabharwal and his           1974 vintage that is a single sherry
 distribution currently in 25 states.   team. The following includes a        cask and is the first exclusive
 Purple Valley cultivates personal      sampling of the fine spirits Purple   release for North America. This
 relationships with the distilleries    Valley imports.                       whisky has fresh fruit flavors
 it represents and specializes in       Amrut Single Malt Whiskey is a        and sherry overtones, spices
                                        product from India that is made in    and a long lasting finish and is
                                        the traditional Scottish methods      bottled at cask strength, natural
                                        using select Indian malted barley     color and without chill-filtration.
                                        grown in Punjab and Rajasthan,        The Glenglassaugh 26 Year Old
                                        the northwest frontier states of      features rich sherry notes that        selections include the Blackadder
                                        India. Amrut single malts have        combine with a medley of boiled        Bowmore 21 Year Old, Smoking
                                        been recipients of several awards,    fruits. This highly complex single
                                                                                                                     Islay 11 Year Old, Balblair 21
                                        including medals at the Malt          malt received a Double Gold
                                        Maniacs Awards and IWSC.              medal at the San Francisco Spirits     Year Old and Bunnahabhian 19
                                        Amrut Fusion was named “3rd           Festival in 2010.                      Year Old.
                                        Finest Whisky in the World” in        Blackadder        Whiskies       are   All Purple Valley Imports Brands
                                        Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible in          produced in Scotland and are
                                        2010 and named World Whisky                                                  are distributed through Pemberton
                                                                              the product of an independent
                                        of the Year in 2011 by Malt           bottler that selects casks that they   Distributing.
                                        Advocate.                             bottle as “Raw Cask Whiskies.”         For more information contact Raj
                                        Glenglassaugh provides a series       The distillery specializes in
                                                                              bottling single casks of Single        Sabharwal
                                        of rare cask Scotch single malt
                                        whiskeys that have been aged          Malt Whisky that have never            raj@purplevalleyimports.com
                                        for decades. Selected exclusively     been colored or filtered. Current      or 704-497-2493.



 Not-to-Miss Spirit Events
 Scotch dinner at Stripsteak            17th Annual Educational               BandVino Acoustic                      Brew’s Best,
 STRIPSTEAK a Michael Mina              Taste of Excellence                   uncorked                               Hand-Crafted Beer Festival
 Restaurant at Mandalay Bay                                                   Wine Tasting with Battle of the        at Lake Las Vegas
 presents an intimate Scotch            Paris Las Vegas                       Acoustic Bands                         March 10, 2012 (Sat) from 1:00
 Dinner Thursday, March 1 at
 6 p.m. This one-night-only             March 3, 2012 (Sat) from 6:00         March 17, 2012 (Sat) from 7:00         PM - 6:00 PM
 event will feature a special                                                 PM - 11:00 PM
                                        PM - 10:00 PM Cost: $60.00                                                   Henderson, NV
 five-course menu with a                                                      Hannah’s Ranch
 Glenfiddich Scotch pairing by          www.cdfnv.org/fundraiser.html                                                Cost: $25.00 in advance and
                                                                              4535 W. Eldorado Lane
 Glenfiddich Brand Ambassador                                                                                        $30.00 at the door
 Mitch Bechard.                                                               Las Vegas, NV 89139
                                                                                                                     www.newvistanv.org
 This exclusive Scotch Dinner                                                 702-622-1802
 is priced at $80 and is all-                                                 Cost: 35.00 p/p in advance -
 inclusive.                                                                   $40 at the door                        Great Vegas
 Reservations are required and                                                www.bandvino.com                       Festival of Beer
 can be made by calling
 (702) 632-7414.                                                                                                     Tivoli Village
                                                                                                                     April 21, 2012 (Sat) from 5:00
 2nd Annual nth 2012                                                                                                 PM - 9:00 PM
 universal Whisky                                                                                                    Cost: Beer Tasting Ticket -
 Experience                                                                                                          $27 online/$37 at the door;
 Wynn/Encore Las Vegas                                                                                               Brewers’ Lounge VIP $37
 March 2-3                                                                                                           online/$47 at the door
 universalwhiskyexperience.com                                                                                       motleybrews.com/events.htm
www.lvfnb.com                                                                       February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 17
                            Restaurateur Raymond Nisi Expands His
                            Double Helix Brand to Tivoli Square with
                                                Bottles and Burgers.



  It is no secret that the current economic environment has affected millions of Americans. Many restaurants have
  closed and loyal employees have lost their jobs. But, as with any negative event, some have excelled in a very tough                          By Elaine &
  environment. One of those risk takers who has expanded in this contracting economy is Raymond Nisi and his Double                             Scott Harris
  Helix brand.
  Raymond opened Double Helix Wine and Whisky Bar/Boutique 4 years ago. It is located at The Shoppes at The
  Palazzo and is situated in a nearly 2,100-square-foot space that includes a circular lounge where guests can enjoy 50
  wines by the glass. The adjacent boutique offers hundreds of bottles of rare and hard-to-find labels from all over the
  world, plus a selection of wine books, wine accessories, wine-infused gourmet foods and specialty spirits.
  His next venture took him to Town Square shopping center where he opened Double Helix Wine and Whisky Lounge.
  The lounge features a full bar that offers more than 30 unique wines by the glass, 50 whiskeys, sampler flights and
  Double Helix’s signature “winetails.”
  Chef Doug Vega, whose previous experience includes Daniel Boulud’s DB Brasserie, heads up the kitchen and has                       Elaine Harris, sommelier,
  created a wine and spirit-friendly small-plates tasting menu.                                                                       owner of Vino Las Vegas
  Raymond’s next step is his biggest venture yet. Recently Raymond opened Bottles and Burgers by Double Helix at                       LLC and Editor-In-Chief
  Tivoli Village in Summerlin. His newest venue features gourmet burgers, salads, and even an old fashioned ice cream                        of The Cuisineist.
  bar and soda fountain, as well as a variety of Double Helix’s private label wine and 50 selections of half bottles of
  wine.                                                                                                                                Scott Harris, sommelier,
  We sat down with Raymond Nisi at Bottles and Burgers and spoke with him about his thoughts on expansion in a                                President of Vino
                                                                                                                                         Las Vegas LLC and a
  down economy and his three venues.                                                                                                     staff journalist for The
                                                                                                                                                     Cuisineist.
  In an economy where restaurants are closing and jobs are             town. It also provides a nice meeting place because it is
  being lost, you are opening restaurants and hiring. What             centrally located.                                               Email:
  is your strategy?                                                                                                                     Cuisineist@gmail.com
                                                                      Okay, let’s move on to your Town Square location.
    I don’t listen to negativity; I always try to be positive. In a
    down economy rents are low and in some cases you can               It was the next step in the plan. Chef Doug Vega has created
    get funding to improve an existing property. It’s like buying      a menu that is tapas style. The lounge is all about sharing
    houses and stocks; you get in when it’s low. Because rents         in a laid back atmosphere. We get large groups of women
    are low you get locked in. When the economy improves,
    your profits increase because you negotiated a low rent in         who come in to talk and relax without having to deal with
    a down economy.                                                    loud music.
  We have visited all three locations and your staff is very          Bottles and Burgers just opened. Please tell us what we
  good. What do you look for when you hire a new employee?            can expect.
    Personality is first and foremost. I can teach service, the
                                                                       This was a natural expansion of the brand. We offer wine
    menu, the wines and the spirits, but I can’t teach personality.
                                                                       and a full bar as well. We are kid friendly and even offer
  Many of your employees have come from other restaurants
  on and off the strip. Do you ever hire any without any               an old fashioned soda fountain for them. We have over 50
  previous experience?                                                 half bottles of wine. Krista Rediske, our wine director, has
    That is a great question! This is a tough town. Everyone is        done a great job spearheading this. The half bottles have
    expected to have experience when you walk in the door. In          been received very well and offer guests an opportunity to
    all three venues I have hired people who had no previous           get another way to enjoy different wines without having to
    restaurant experience. I go with a gut feeling. I have been
    wrong, but if they have personality I will give them a             order a whole bottle.
    chance. I have a few bartenders that started as barbacks          Finally, what do you foresee for the Las Vegas economy
    with no bar experience, so I have been right as well.             in 2012?
  Tell us about Double Helix Palazzo.
                                                                       It will improve, but in small increments. More local
    It is now 4 years old. It provides a great experience to sample
                                                                       businesses need to open and they need to be supported by
    wines by the glass and Scotches and whiskeys that you may
    not see very often. We even get repeat tourists, which is a        the community. Locally owned businesses define a city’s
    big plus. They come back to see us every time they are in          culture. Shop local!


18 The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional I February 2012                                                                                   www.lvfnb.com
                         Catersource 2012
                         On the Catersource Tradeshow floor, you’ll
                         find the newest in buffet and table top ideas,
                         linens and china options, creative displays and
                         décor; check out the most up to date transport
                         and holding units; find the latest kitchen
                         innovations for cooking in and outdoors and
                         serving equipment geared just for catering;
                         test software options and see the upcoming
                         trends in plastics and disposables - all in
                         one place!
                         Get thousands of ideas while you take
                         advantage of the many show specials, meet
                         with your vendors face-to-face and discover
                         new suppliers that want to do business with
                         you. Of course, you’ll also sample some of
                         the best catering-tailored foods and beverages
                         you won’t find anywhere else.
                         Go to www.catersource.com to find out more!
Photos by George Fryer




  www.lvfnb.com                                                            February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 19
   Dried spices, herbs, & seasonings are not immune to E. coli and Salmonella.
          All Al Dentes’ products are processed, cleaned, & bacteria treated in the
                        United States to US health & safety standards.

                Spice purchases make up less than 1/2% of your food
                       cost and contribute 90% of your flavor.
 Al Dentes’ believes that our quick turnover from packing to end user enables us to offer the
                safest & freshest product available to the foodservice industry.

                                                        All Products Processed in the USA.
Custom Blended, Packaged, & Distributed Locally with the Highest Quality Products Available.

 Al Dentes’ mission is simple: Provide our customers the best, safest products and service
    available at the lowest prices possible. We take pride in being a Las Vegas company
                       committed to safe, fresh, & high quality products.
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                                                        Al Dentes’ Provisions                 702-642-1100
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                                                        6960 W Warm Springs Road, Suite 130
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                                                                                              702-617-5686 fax
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                                                        Las Vegas, Nevada 89113               sales@aldentes.com
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  Latenight With Ryan
                                                YOUR GUIDE TO INDUSTRY-FRIENDLY LATENIGHT HOTSPOTS
                                                                                                                                By Ryan “Hollywood”
                                                                                                                                          Wieczorek
 Adventures in Wine Country
 “Attention Las Vegas wine lovers: immerse yourself in Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon in the Napa Valley for just
 $59 with our 1-day flight specials.” As I read that tagline for the email message, I began to see myself driving through
 Napa with a glass of champagne in one hand and the steering wheel of a red mustang convertible in the other. It was
 obviously time for a vacation. Next stop Napa!
 I pre-selected my destinations based on countless opinions and discussion with numerous wine snobs. “Oh, the Cabernet
 at Opus One is divine,” remarked an older man whom I met at M Resorts “Hostile Grape.” “Nonsense, Nickel Nickel
 has the best Cabernet in Napa,” the wine-tender remarked to both of us. The only way to settle the feud was to go to both
 wineries myself. For the third winery, I chose Domaine Carneros, a winery known for having outstanding champagne.
 And since Halloween, I have been on a champagne fix.                                                                            Ryan is a classically
                                                                                                                                 trained chef and a
                                                                                                                                 veteran mixologist
 Domaine Carneros                                                  four wine classes and gone on countless wine tours and        plying his trade in
 After a 3-hour airport delay,                                     trips, I was in awe. After explaining to me how Opus One      Las Vegas. As the
 I finally made it to Domaine                                      got started by Robert Mondavi, who beat up his fifty-some     Event Director for
 Carneros, a winery located                                        year old brother in a fight, and Barons De Rothschild (you    Getout! Las Vegas
 before Downtown Napa in                                           might know him as Mr. Lafite Rothschild), we made our         he has been involved
 the Carneros region. Taryn,                                       way through the winery and into the cellar, where we          with a number of
 my wine hostess by night and                                      drank a 2008 Vintage Opus One. Pretty damn tasty!! So         projects in expanding
                                                                                                                                 the Vegas Nightlife
 law avenger by day, greeted                                       tasty, I made my way to the other tasting room to buy a       Scene.
 me. She took us to an elegant                                     2005 Opus One, which was even tastier.
 section of their chateau to
 enjoy some of their exquisite                                     Nickel Nickel                                                     Phone:
 wines. Having gone in with                                        If your farmer grandparents told you that they were making          714-721-2670
 just the knowledge of their                                       wine, Nickel Nickel is exactly how you would picture it.
 champagne, I discovered a                                         Complete with barns, tractors and an old historic house,          Email:
 whole new world to their collection of wines. They are the        this definitely screamed out vintage. However, the winery     nightlife@lvfnb.com
 only ones that I have ever seen make a white wine from            is more modern than it looks. They produce all their own
 the Pinot Noir grape, and it was amazing. All the pinot           energy through solar panels, and each winery contains a
 taste you love with the beauty of a white wine. It wasn’t         distinct type of soil. They are known as Single Vineyard
 until she took out the bottle of “Le Reve Blanc de Blancs         wines, which means that the wines are not blended
 Sparkling Wine” that I fell in love. While sitting three          between vineyards like 90% of all other wines. At the end
 floors above sea level, gazing at a hill full of fresh vines, I   of my tour, we sat down to taste five different glasses of
 just tasted the best champagne of my life. Everyone who           Cabernet Sauvignon, all from different vineyards. As we
 knows me knows that I love Dom Perignon, but the elegant          went around our tasting table explaining which Cabernet
 beautiful taste of Le Reve Blanc de Blancs finally beat the       we liked the best, I was happily sipping away at all
 undefeated Don Perignon and became my #1 champagne                of them, liking them all equally the same. But it was a
 of choice. One bad thing about that is you can’t get it in        Pinot Noir called “En Route” that stole all my affection.
 Vegas. Someone needs to call Southern Wine and tell them          Never have I enjoyed a Pinot Noir so thoroughly, and after
 to ship some over ASAP.                                           finishing mine, I drank my girlfriend’s glass while she
                                                                   wasn’t looking.
 Opus One
 Any so-called wino knows of Opus One, but do they know            I thoroughly enjoyed my wine trip to Napa and intend
 the real Opus One? I learned all about the winery on my           to come back soon. If you are looking for a weekend
 visit. Being the first guests of the day at 10 AM, normal         escape and you see a 1-day flight deal to
 for a Vegan to drink but not so normal for a non-Vegas            Northern California, push the buy button.
                               resident, I was excited to enter    You can take in the beautiful scenery of
                               the gates and drive to what         the Carneros region while indulging in
                               seemed to be the architectural      various flutes of champagne at Domaine
                               resemblance of a wine glass.        Carneros, visit one of the most culture
                               My host use to reside in            rich vineyards and sip Cabernet while
                               Vegas, so he understands our        overlooking the property at the terrace
                               early morning mojito in bed         at Opus One and discover the love of
                               culture. I never met anyone         single vineyard wines at Nickel Nickel.
                               who knew wine the way he            No matter where you go, there are tons
                               knew wine. Having taken             of wines to discover in the Napa region.

www.lvfnb.com                                                                       February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 21
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             You Work Hard on Your Menu . . .
                                       page 19
               Leave the MAGIC to Chef Paul!
 www.acesandales.com
 702-436-7600       Choose From 28 Magic Seasoning Blends Products
                                                                                                  to Chef Paul!
                                                                                                         Choose From 28 Magic Seasoning Blends Products
 Al dentes’ Provisions                                page 22 Paul Prudhomme
                                                            Chef
 sales@aldentes.com                                           stands for quality and
                                                                                                                                   Chef Paul Prudhomme
                                                              he proudly offers his
 702-642-1100                                                 line of all-natural, Magic                                           stands for quality and
                                                              Seasoning Blends (17),                                               he proudly offers his
                                                              Magic Sauce & Marinades
 Big dog’s Brewing Company                            page   23 Magic Chiles (7)
                                                              (4),                                                                 line of all-natural, Magic
 www.bigdogsbrews.com                                         and Smoked Meats                                                     Seasoning Blends (17),
                                                              (Andouille & Tasso)!                                                 Magic Sauce & Marinades
 702-368-3715
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                                                                                                                                   (Andouille & Tasso)!
 www.bjsrestaurants.com
 702-851-8050 Order Direct 800-457-2857 or request                                         Order Direct 800-457-2857 or request
                   products from your local distributor. Save $5                           products from your local distributor.
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                Questions?                                                                 Questions?
                   Call Gregg Villarrubia (504) 731-3519                                   Call Gregg Villarrubia (504) 731-3519
                   gvillarrubia@chefpaul.com                                               gvillarrubia@chefpaul.com

 Chef Paul Prudhomme’s                            page 23                                  Las Vegas broker contact:
                Las Vegas broker contact:
 Magic Seasoning BlendsCSI-Vegas
                Rick Mundy                                                                 Rick Mundy CSI-Vegas
                                                                                           8560 South Eastern Avenue-Suite 110
                8560 South Eastern Avenue-Suite 110
 www.chefpaul.com Vegas, NV 89123
                Las                                                                        Las Vegas, NV 89123
                                                                                           (702)947-3193
 702-947-3193 (702)947-3193
                rick.mundy@nasserco.com                                                    rick.mundy@nasserco.com
                   www.chefpaul.com
                                                                                           www.chefpaul.com
 Green Restaurant Association                         page 5
 www.dinegreen.com
 617-737-3344

 nespresso                                            page 24
 www.nespresso.com/pro
 800.566.0571

 nightclub & Bar                                      page 22
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 www.ncbshow.com

 Rock n Roll Wines                                    page 19
 www.rockandrollwine.com
 702-240-3066

 Santa Monica Seafood                                 page 11
 www.santamonicaseafood.com
 800-969-8862

 Three Square                                         page 7
 www.threesquare.org
 702-644-3663

 Tropicana                                            page 15
 www.troplv.com
 702-462-8767

www.lvfnb.com                                                                              February 2012 I The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional 23
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