Not exactly sure how this “dining tour” idea came about. Maybe it had something to do with refreshments at the pool in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower? Anyway, fellow bons vivants (my brother, sister-in-law, and our dear friend Susan from New Jersey) adore Vegas and its impressive collection of world-renowned Chefs. When we plan our trips to Vegas “where shall we dine?” is the first order of business.
Thanks to my brother’s edict that we try new restaurants each visit, on last Fall’s trip we hit the mother lode. We re-discovered Las Vegas’ first celebrity chef, the charming André Rochat. It may have been we were so blown-away by our experience that we convinced Don we absolutely had to go back to André’s, tout de suite. However it evolved, the first “French Dining Tour of Vegas” was born – a trip where we would eat at exclusively French restaurants, or those with French Chefs, and of course we would stay at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino.
French Dining Tour of Vegas Itinerary
Late Night Snack
Michel Richard’s CENTRAL @ Caesar’s
MON AMI GABI @ Paris
POOLSIDE below the Eiffel Tower
EIFFEL TOWER RESTAURANT BAR @ Paris
ANDRE’S @ Monte Carlo
FRANCOIS PAYARD PATISSERIE & BISTRO @ Caesar’s
Afternoon Wine & Cheese
PETROSSIAN BAR @ Bellagio
L’ATELIER DE JOEL ROBUCHON @ MGM Grand
MON AMI GABI @ Paris
French Dining Tour of Vegas in Pictures
In addition to the Dining Tour, we also had great fun playing a rather new variant of Blackjack, called Blackjack Switch. In this game the player must play two hands, with equal bets. When the cards are dealt, the player can then ask the dealer to switch the second card dealt to each hand. The hand signal for this move is to point the index and middle fingers, then flip them over, indicating a “switch.” How many times have you wished you could switch your cards? Now it isn’t cheating anymore!
Of course, the House will keep its percentage, so a Blackjack only pays even money, and a dealer hand of 22 results in a push. Blackjack Switch has a winning strategy slightly different from the Basic Strategy, especially when it comes to double down and splitting. There are also instances when a player might not hit or stick in the usual manner, due to the dealer push on a 22. Switch strategies can be found online. If played correctly the house odds are similar to those of regular 21, where a player has the opportunity for payback at approximately 99.5%. We found this new game to be exciting, challenging and fast-paced, and we seemed to play longer than usual on the same amount of cash. Have you played?
We’re thinking our next “Tour” might be the Italian Dining Tour of Vegas. Perhaps stay at The Venetian. Any input for restaurants? Osteria del Circo is on my list…