Thursday, March 29, 2007

Dining Experiences In Las Vegas

We didn't make hitting a fantastic restaurant every meal a priority, but did manage a few memorable dining experiences! High end dining is available all over Vegas, but we ended up incorporating convenience with good eats.
Top Of The World- 900ft in the sky, the view is unequaled! The restaurant rotates, so you have a 360 degree view of Las Vegas. I mentioned in another post about what I had(Kobe beef carpaccio, chunks of Parmesean, capers, designer leaves of some lettuce, with olive oil/spice dressing drizzled on it.) I also had an award winning lobster bisque which was great!
My wife ordered the pork chop, which had an apple/apricot chutney and had the best pork aroma you could imagine. The couple we were with both ordered prime rib which was tender, and done to their liking(Typical prime rib....). The service and "feel" of the place was excellent. The place was not overly busy, as most would go here for dinner-not lunch.
The Villiage Seafood Buffet at the Rio- Rated 3rd best buffet in Vegas, don't go unless you are hungry! The seafood is fresh and as well prepared as a buffet could provide. Crab legs, cold water lobster, shrimp any way imaginable, clams, mussels, scallops, etc. If you didn't like seafood and went here, you'd be an idiot(at $35 ea.) but there is duck, prime rib and other non swimming eats too. Salads, bread, soups, desserts, no one could go away hungry! I am not a buffet person. I really can't hold enough food eaten in one sitting to make it pay. I also tend to eat more than is comfortable(as it all looks soooo good!).
Fellini's- We had a couple of hours before heading to the airport, so we caught a meal that was convenient. A smaller place than some out there, with a great wait staff. We started with appetizers; good bread slathered in a cheesy, garlicky spread and a stuffed portobella mushroom. The mushroom was covered with a crabmeat sauce, then covered with melted fresh mozzarella and carmelized onions. Damn good! Entrees were-Chicken Marsala(me!) I love this dish, but the sauce varies wherever you go. Not too sweet,but a little thin for me. My buddy had Chicken Parmigiana, and loved it. Ladies both ordered Shrimp Alfredo. Sauce looked a little thin to me, but they had no complaints. Now that we all have serious garlic breath-Let's get on the plane!
Wait! We have to have a nightcap at the bar atop the Stratosphere! This is an experience at night. One tier above the restaurant, you can see every light turned on in Las Vegas! Took some pictures that did not turn out, oh well... By the way, if you do this don't try to get loaded up there-drinks are about $10 a piece and you still better leave a tip!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Vegas Show We Attended-Mystere Cirque Du Soleil..

It started back home on line trying to score good tickets at a good price. Block of 4, best available. I had some in a pretty good location mid theater, but couldn't get an answer from the other couple soon enough-they were gone. Later, I went back on line to try and get what was left, when 4 seats in the third row,middle popped up! Somebody had cancelled, so I grabbed 'em! The show was a stunning display of acrobatic ability, color, and sound. Humor, beauty, and action went on for 1-1/2 hrs non-stop. The seats we had put us w/in 15 feet of the stage, and closer was better! No cameras allowed, but a great memory anyway!

Monday, March 26, 2007

The Vegas Chronicles- Story 1...

I mentioned I planned to get into a Texas Hold'em tournament-and I did! Most casinos out there have them with a format like this: $60 buys you $4000 chips. They raise the blinds every 20 minutes so most contests are over in 2-1/2hrs. There were 25 people in ours, couple of women, some older guys, some younger guys. Some drunk, some too sober. Anyway, we started with my buddy taking an early lead, only to get bounced on an "all in" by a person with a larger full house than his! My play started slow, waiting for playable cards. I won a decent pot with a good hand, then won a bigger one on a bluff against a bluff! My pair of deuces beat the other liars' king high! One by one, players were elliminated- mainly by a table bully with alot of chips, and his friend who was getting the best cards at the tables. But the bully started making costly mistakes, and his buddy had lost his lucky draws. I was winning money off both of them, until I looked at the stacks and realized I had the most chips! I looked at the board to see what the places would pay- and first was $716 ! Within 2 hrs I had entered my first poker tournament and won! I treated my friend and our wives to a lunch at a restaurant atop the Stratosphere, which ran about 150 bucks. My buddy thanked me-and I told him "You paid 60 bucks to get into the game, and won nothing. I think all you just did is pay for your own lunch!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Back From Vegas, Off To Chicago (15hr Layover At Home!)

Can't report on vacation until I get back from a 2 day work related trip to Chicago! Hope you're all well!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

No Fear Of Flying-Just A Little Claustrophobic...

Tuesday really early, we leave for Las Vegas. Grand Rapids MI to Twin Cities, a layover, then straight out. Last time on a plane, it was stupid crowded. We did not sit together as a family, and I was stuck in the middle seat between 2 large people(And I wasn't small!) Looong flight, and air was getting stale. By the time I got off that plane, I was seriously pissed. I am concerned about a repeat, as I usually drive wherever I go. I have worked in outside sales for 30 years. I am not used to being in an office or one place for more than a couple of hours at the most. You would be surprised how that can change you! Once we get there, things should be fine-provided they aren't hauling me off to Security when we land....

Friday, March 16, 2007

Winters' Last Blast And St Paddys' Day!

Looks like the Midwest & East will get one(I hope!) last dose of winter. Until Jan. it was the mildest, after that-the wildest!
Everybody ready for St Pats' Day? I'm not Irish, and don't own alot of green clothes, but I do enjoy corned beef & cabbage, or a Reuben alot. Good Irish stew where they actually use lamb is a treat also. Guiness if you cut it with an Irish lager( to make a Black and Tan or a 'alf and 'alf!) makes it alot more palatable-at least to me! The music is enjoyable, provided you don't have to listen to it for more than an hour- then it all starts sounding the same! Tell me how you plan to enjoy the day when we all are Irish for a bit...

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Viva Las Vegas! One More Week To Go....

Last night, the friends we will be meeting in Las Vegas stopped by to go over the loose agenda we have set up for the vacation. Got killer seats (3rd row!) to Mystique at Treasure Island, plan to play in at least one Texas Hold 'Em tournament, going out to the dam(Hoover) and a couple of dinners to be determined. I am calling this "Retro Vegas Trip" because we are near downtown, and expect to be there most of the time-by choice! It's been over 10 years since we've been there, and everyone assures me much has changed. Just looking forward to a week off, and a landscape with NO SNOW!!!

Friday, March 09, 2007

A Full, But Odd Day Coming At Me...

Tomorrow, I must leave the house by 8am and head for a KCBS(Kansas City BB-Q Society) judging seminar. I don't plan on being a judge, I'm going for the knowledge of what a judge is looking for when I am trying to place more often and higher in the competitions! It will be held locally, and I expect to see alot of my competitors there for the same reason I am attending. A friend of mine organized it, so he appreciated the support from me and others, as he is trying to move up in the KCBS. I am pretty sure there will be food to judge!
Later, I must attend the old musical "Oklahoma" w/wife & relatives. Yeee F**kin Haaa! I'm sure it will be more entertaining than what I can imagine... The Movie version struck me as pretty gay even before I knew about such things...
Well, brown rice is a-cookin, and time to put the steaks in the broiler-Have a good one this weekend!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Leftovers-We All Got 'Em, What'll We Do With 'Em?

As I have explained earlier, the weather here has made mundane(or fun!) tasks difficult to the point of "screw it". Sundays, I usually grocery shop. My wife was gone for the week-end, and I didn't feel that ambitious so I checked my supplies for ingredients to make a dinner. I decided chicken,mushroom noodle casserrole on a cold, snowy day would be good. Simmered chicken, got out stuff for sauce-then I realized I had no egg noodles, just Italian type pastas. Had to abort plan, but what to do with 2-1/2lbs of cooked chicken breasts? Made a quick switch to chicken spaghetti-chunks of tender white meat in a sauce of chix broth,tomato base pasta sauce and mushrooms, served over the pasta. Good stuff, but a ton left over! Last night, took remaining sauce and made a chicken, mushroom,pepperoni pizza! Lots of Provolone, Parmasan,Mozzarella & Romano grated or shredded to tie it together.
Anytime we can do "Leftover Control" we always feel like forward progress was accomplished!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Procrastination-The Downward Spiral

I hate paperwork,reports,computer work and Accountability in general! There was a time in my life when results were the only measurement stick. Now, thanks to technology we can be found anywhere, anytime. Sales was a dream job at one time(Before cell phones,pagers,etc.). You called in a couple of times a day and got your messages, and took care of business. Now I have to check voice mail, text messages,E-mails and pager quotes! I figured out I was now working an extra week every month! I only get mad when I get behind-like now......

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Wife Out For Couple Of Days With The Girls

And here I am with my thoughts and my two other girls; Willow the cat, and Clara the Airdale. More bad weather came in, making my wifes' road trip with the gals a little less fun. Probably try a new dessert(something citrusy) and unusual(no wife!) main meal for Sunday. Loads of paperwork to do for work too. My sons' girlfriend is out of town too, so last night he came by for food. His request was for sloppy joes! Your basic ground chuck,chopped onion,chopped celery, catsup, mustard, vinegar,brown sugar,salt,pepper and Worstchesire sauce sloppy joe. Taste 'O Home for him, I think. I ate one,wife managed two, he ate four!His new car is working out great, so peace reigned for at least one evening! Currently outside we have more snow than ever. March??!! Enough!!!!