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A Halting and Incomplete Report from the Las Vegas Epicurean Affair Written in a Sort of Blissful Gastronomic Hangover

My stomach is finally starting to deflate into some acceptable semblance of normal-stomachitude after an utterly prodigal night of noshing and drinking at the Palazzo Sept. 9. Yes, I hit foodiefest the Las Vegas Epicurean Affair, held at the Palazzo Pools, a beautiful outdoor space that was either enhanced or diminished by go-go dancers skoozling their hams atop pedestals (I still can't decide).

But the food. Oh. The food. Wait. Actually, first: the drinks. Oh, the drinks. Anyone who knows me can attest that I'm not one to turn down a snort of, ahem, [children-safe air-quotes] adult beverage but, man, an hour into the Epicurean Affair, I was flapping my hand in a feeble "Please, no, I will die!" gesture to proffered trays of sweet, soul-numbing, glittering alcohol. But whether it was Laguna Champagne Bar's incredible elderflower concoction or the caramel martinis I vaguely remember lapping up or Canyon Ranch's refreshalicious watermelon rum shooters or LAVO's cups of pomegranate vodka bliss, I propose they rename this thing the Slurpicurean Affair.

Of course, the gourmet noshables -- small bites upon small bites -- on offer were no less mind-blowing. Highlights from last night:

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- Okay. I think I'm going to hire a tailor for a custom-made ninja outfit. Then I will put it on, break into Hash House A Go Go under cover of darkness, and steal their recipe for their chocolate and peanut butter bread pudding. It is nothing less than a pure glob of heaven, if heaven were globby and then scooped onto a plate.

- SushiSamba served up the same yellowtail tacos they peddled at last month's Carnival of Cuisine. And you know what? I certainly don't mind. In fact, I don't mind so much I encourage them to peddle these crispy bites directly into my mouth every month in an event I'm calling the Carnival of My Hungry Gnasher.

- Wolfgang Puck's Postrio served a delectable deconstructed slider. Next to that, Puck's CUT served a glistening slablet of maple-glazed pork belly. I could have pinballed between those two booths all night until hustled out by grim, truncheon-wielding security guards.

- Nobu offered up addictive jalapeno-inflected sashimi and . . . was it generously sauced black cod so incredibly tender that it flaked under my mere gaze? I think it was. Frankly, I couldn't hear the nice woman trying to describe it to me over my own somewhat feral peals of anticipatory delight.

- At this point, I gave up taking notes because my hand started shaking uncontrollably due to recurring flavorgasms rolling over my body in successive waves of culinary bliss. One mental note branded on my mind, however: I will be back. Oh. I will.
 

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