Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Vegas Vacation

I went with my daughter to Las Vegas for her 8th grade graduation. At the beginning of the year I made a deal with her that if she got straight A's we would got on a mini vacation and she chose Vegas. It was definitely not my first choice but at least it had a lot of dessert options.

Our first stop on our "All Sugar All The Time Tour" was Serendipity 3. It's located outside Caesar's Palace next to Las Vegas Blvd. The atmosphere is great, the food not so much. They are known for their Frozen Hot Chocolate although we didn't try it because it just sounds gross. The Watermelon Supreme, a tart slushy in giant glass, was refreshing in the Las Vegas heat but a little goes a long way. By the time we walked to the Mirage for The Beatles LOVE show we threw the rest of the Supreme away. We did stop back by later for one of their donuts. The chocolate donut was the size of a head, but nothing more than a everyday chocolate donut. My favorite thing about the place was all the pink, and the Marie Antoinette mascot of coarse.

Our next stop was the Sugar Factory. Basically a overpriced candy store with celebrity endorsements. They have shops at Planet Hollywood, The Mirage and a new store opening in Paris. Like Serendipity I loved the atmosphere with the sugar themed music blasting, but the candy was just ordinary except for the ridiculous $20 suckers. We rested our feet at The Sugar Factory at Planet Hollywood which serves gelato, crepes, cupcakes and a few other baked goods. I bought a coconut gelato which was good, but not as good as the coconut ice cream from Tropical Dreams Ice Cream in Hawaii. I also bought a I Heart Sugar T-shirt which was cheaper than their stupid lollipops.
We searched for more desserts Monday night/morning but everything closed at 11pm, I guess that's why it's New York that's called "The City That Never Sleeps" and not Las Vegas. So at 8:30 the next morning we walked down to the Pallazio and found my favorite Napa bakery, Bouchon. Another disappointment. Being Las Vegas they have the opportunity to make an over the top bakery, but this looked like something you would find in the airport. Paris would have been a much better location and they could have the same rustic look that the Napa bakery has.  The menu wasn't much different than Napa except they had ginormous cupcakes. I got the chocolate cupcake. (Yes! It was breakfast.) The frosting caught me off guard, it was a marshmallow frosting that I wasn't fond of.(Maybe toasted on a S'mores cupcake.) The chocolate cake was a little dry and it was filled with a chocolate ganache/frosting similar to the center of their chocolate donuts. Between my daughter and myself we couldn't even finish it, that should tell you a lot. It was a sad sight, two Bouchon fans siting dessert-less in a beautiful faux Venetian street.
After going back to Mandalay Bay and splashing on their beach for awhile, we went back out in search of more crazy people and more sugar. In front of the new Aria there was a cute patisserie called Amore. After passing by it the night before and drooling over their macarons we stopped in. They had tons of yummy looking pastries and baked goods. Being summer in Las Vegas we couldn't order more than we could eat because it would just melt so we just sampled 3 of their macarons. Chocolate, Lemon and Peanut. They were all good, (Not as good as Paulette's in San Francisco.)  but the Peanut was my favorite. It wasn't peanut butter necessarily it had a richer truer peanut flavor, you definitely need to like peanuts to enjoy it. Next time I would love to try more of their desserts they looked very promising. Off we went to find people digging in fountains and jet skiing through Bellagio's lake.
On our last night we eventually made it to our favorite place in Vegas, Jean Philippe. With a giant chocolate fountain in the front and chocolate sculptures through out the shop the only thing that could make this place better would be if it had a fainting couch for me to lay in. Last time I was here I ordered one of everything just about, this time I only ordered the Triple Chocolate. It was divine, a mix of white, milk and dark chocolate mousse on top of a flourless cake, wrapped in chocolate and topped with a stick of chocolate fudge, gold leaf and a macaron. Thank goodness this place is in Vegas because I could really make myself sick if it was any closer. My daughter ordered a strawberry gelato and thought it was wonderful. I am not really into fruit desserts, they are a little too healthy for me, but this was very yummy and I would order it again for myself. Finally our love for sweets was fulfilled.
The next morning we were packing up to leave and decided to get some breakfast from Red White and Blue located in our hotel. When I saw their King Kong sized Rice Krispie Treat I couldn't help myself. (This little piggy built her house out of Rice Krispie Treats.) I had to take a picture of it with my phone next to it so you can see how monstrous it was. With a Krispie Treat this big I wasn't expecting it to taste that great it was more of a novelty. I was wrong, it was surprisingly good. Its wasn't gourmet or anything but it tasted as a Krispie Treat should, and they used a nice high quality chocolate to dip it in. I ended up bring it home with us and eating it over the next three days. (Quite the souvenir.)

With only 3 hours of sleep a night and nothing but desserts for meals the trip was a success.

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