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Just another Monday night in Vegas

Met some of our industry friends visiting from the Boca area in Florida the other night at the Aria Resort & Casino. We started with drinks at View Bar, and our buddy brought cigars for us to have. Before dinner. Sheesh. This bar is in a great location, but unfortunately has almost zero atmosphere being immediately off the hotel lobby and one of the first impressions that you get of Aria. I started off with two different aperitifs – the first was Aperol with soda, splash grapefruit. Delicious and one of my favorite ways to start a meal. Next was a Negroni, my own recipe – Aperol, Hendrick’s Gin and Lillet Blanc. If you’ve never had this concoction, you need to. Now.

After opening our palates, we went around the corner to enjoy dinner at Sage, one of my favorite Vegas restaurants. First course for me was Seared Scallops with Braised Oxtail, Wild Mushrooms & Salted Caramel Reduction. Holy Hell was this good. It was very rich, but well worth the experience.

The Kitchen then sent out a mid-course for us to try which included:

-Roasted Sweetbreads with glazed bacon, creamy white polenta & trumpet mushrooms -Slow-poached Organic Farm egg, smoked potato, shaved summer truffles & toasted country bread -Lobster Ravioli with sugar snap peas – which was intense

My entrée was killer – seared Veal Cheeks with polenta and wild mushrooms. Also, our server sent out a taste of a 48-hour Braised Beef Belly – Wow! It was slightly smoky and reminiscent of a (non-salted) style-pastrami, simply one of the best prepared meats I’ve ever had.

Dessert was an awesome, savory Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Ice Cream. Along with dessert I had a much needed digestif, Amaro Montenegro, a perfect way to end the meal and a wonderful evening.