David and I couldn’t leave Las Vegas without one decadent tasting menu experience. L’Atelier De Joël Robuchon at the MGM Grand gave us one amazing night (a wonderful calm in the storm of American Super Bowl mania).
Joël Robuchon is a famous French chef, and every time I have been to Vegas I have walked by this beautiful restaurant wishing I was with someone who was willing to pay the pretty extravagant cost for a night of culinary excellence. David is that guy!
The decor is beautiful, bold primary accents set against a predominantly black and red palette. The placemats are even special. It’s also a unique dining experience where you sit at a bar around the kitchen, so you can watch the excellence in action.
Unbeknownst to us, we chose Super Bowl weekend to visit Las Vegas – where apparently people gamble on this game! And, our reservation was smack dab in the middle of the game. It meant we had the place entirely to ourselves for about an hour. Everyone was cooking for us, and our very charming host and knowledgable Sommelier gave us a lot of their time. It was a fantastic way to start the night.
As we sat down, we new we were in for the full experience – a 9-course meal with a wine pairing (a new wine paired with every two courses). There is no doubt it is an extravagance. But watching the care that goes into preparing these wonderful dishes, made from exceptional ingredients, I can only tell you it was completely worth it to us.
The seasonal discovery menu started with an amuse bouche of a foie gras parfait, with a port wine reduction and parmesan emulsion. It was a lovely light custard-type savoury and salty bite to start. Paired with Verve Clicquot champagne, we knew we were in for a great night.
Our second course was Le Crabe – a royal crab mimosa and french black truffle. Think devilled egg, only the best devilled egg of your life that blows your mind with treasures of fresh crab in the creamy mayo-like sauce. Heavenly.
Moving on to the third and fourth course, these continued on the lighter savoury side with the flavours getting bolder. Each was paired with a Marc Bredif Vouvray white wine that was really lovely.
La Saint-Jacques was a delicately and perfectly steamed scallop in a tart seaweed butter. It was followed by L’oignon – a spring onion soup with diced bacon atop a comte cheese cream. This could have been my favourite dish of the entire night, as the flavour was really bright and rich.
Our fifth and sixth course moved us slightly more into the more hearty and bolder flavours, and the wine moved into the red territory with a Tavel from Prieure de Montezargues.
La Truffe was a rectangle of french black truffle with sushi rice and celery. We really loved how the rice was perfectly cooked with a crispy edge. Le Bar was a sea bass seared in a light garlic garlic butter with chorizo, on top of porcini cream. These were both delicate, yet strong flavours. Perfection.
The main course of the night was a choice of quail or steak, each with its own pairing of wine. I chose La Caille – a caramelized free range quail stuffed with foie gras with mashed potatoes. The wine pairing was a Burgundy from Joseph Drouhin. It was a really lovely dish.
David absolutely loved his choice of La Hampe – a medium-rare french-style hanger steak with roasted shallots and shishito peppers. He also really flipped for the wine, a Bordeaux from Le Clementin du Pape Clement. Best wine of the night.
As we were giddily discussing our love for the wonderful savoury dishes of the night (already completely happy and satisfied), we were served two fantastic desserts, paired with a Cerdon dessert wine.
As I really love fruity desserts, I loved every single spoonful of the L’Exotique – a tropical cream with exotic fruit sorbet and a cassis gelee. This may have been the best dessert of my life.
David loved the Le Chocolate the best – an artistic and beautiful flower made from red velvet chocolate ice cream, with a beet and raspberry compote. Almost too beautiful to eat.
Finally, to end the night, we sipped on cappuccino with a raspberry chocolate to simply enjoy the afterglow of such a special meal and such wonderful service. It was truly a night to remember, with exquisite and masterful food, and a memory that David and I will cherish together.