Bartolotta. At The Wynn in Vegas. Here's part two (part 1 here) of my "Vegan in Vegas" review. No grilled veggie plate here folks..
Thank You Steve Wynn. I sat there aglow in warm candlelight, in my cushy seat at a lush outdoor table at The Wynn's Bartolotta Restaurant. Twinkling lights all around me, a hum of music in the distance, gold and bronze striped cabanas rounding the Koi pool. Turquoise at me feet, dotted with shiny sliver globes and swimming rainbow-colored fish swirling about. Normally, this is where my fists would tighten, my brow furrow and my heart sink as I open the 'fine dining' menu to see nothing but non-vegan offerings. But not this time.
"Hi! I'm vegan." Pause. It's always exciting to see what comes next from the waiter, right?..
Well, I guess when the "big boss" in charge is vegan, the employees better learn to embrace it as well. And they did so graciously, sincerely and with enthusiasm. I was proudly handed my own personal VEGAN Menu. No awkward pause. No fidgeting from the waiter. No "So, can you eat fish?" The word vegan was welcomed with a genuine smile.
I accepted the vegan menu and was dazzled by the contents. I could just picture Steve Wynn lounging in a cabana across the pond, giving my vegan menu request a thumbs up and flashing me a smile. We'd toss back our carefree heads and laugh, take a sip of wine and wink at each other as we simultaneously dove fork-first into our plate of farro risotto, porcini mushrooms and savory kale. It's true! Vegan in Vegas is possible. Thanks to The Wynn, you can experience luxurious, over-the-top "Vegas-style" dining - and it's all.. *choir sings* .. vegan.
..so that was, in essence, what the night (my Anniversary dinner) was like at Bartolotta. As you can see from my cell phone header photos, this post doesn't contain any pics of the food at Bartolotta. And while I'm sad about that, that does say a lot about the meal!...
Fact: You know the food and dining experience is amazing if a food blogger wants to, but somehow doesn't whip out their camera! I just cell snapped the menu and I was off duty.
Really, I just wanted to absorb the moment. The smells, sounds and fabulous company.
About the Menu. I was expecting one vegan option for each course. So I was thrilled when my waiter brought out my very own vegan menu - filled with vegan (left side) and vegetarian (right side) options.
I decided on these four courses:
* Farinata alla Lingure - chickpea cake, arugula, fennel, fried capers
review: I love anything with arugula and fennel - totally fresh and flavorful greens. The chickpea cakes were fried bites of heaven. Moist and tender - flattened like pancakes. The fried capers were a very nice touch - and something new I've never tried - salty yum accent.
* Insalatina di Carciofi, porcini, ruchetta - artichoke salad, porcini mushrooms, arugula
review: porcini mushrooms were earthy and tender, oozing with rustic flavors. Again, very rustic and fresh veggies - marinated with intense flavors. Amazing.
*Farrotto di Funghi e cavojo nero - Farro risotto, imported porcini mushrooms, Tuscan kale
review: a warm shallow bowl of steaming hot mushroom, kale and farro bliss. Total comfort food too. I almost forgot about my skinny black dress, made up face and high heel shoes.
* Dessert - 6 different sorbettos and granita that our waiter insisted we try. I wasn't sure if I could consume dessert, but I actually put a sturdy dent into the dish of frozen delights. Oh, and we also had two soy cappuccinos - our waiter drizzled some hazelnut liquor in it as well.
See more at Bartolotta at The Wynn
Photo Sesh. To add to the fun, right before dinner we had a fun photo session scheduled with Vegas photographer Lesley Brown. We wanted to get some professional photos to commemorate our 5th anniv trip, and really, I was not lugging out my tripod in the middle of the Vegas strip. So we hired Lesley based on a recommendation from a friend. She was awesome! We limo-hopped all around Vegas snapping fun shots in some very random and classic Vegas spots. If you've never been to Circus Circus and love indoor classic carnival games - head over.
I was able to check "skeeball in a little black dress and super tall heels" off my life list of things to do. :)
If you ever need a Vegas photographer, Lesley is your girl. Her work is creative, beautiful and inspired. Her Pet Photography website is awesome! links:
Lesley Brown Photography
Lesley Brown Pet Photography - Facebook
And when in Vegas, head over to Steve's place on the strip. He'll take care of you ;)