In what comes as a bit of a surprise, Bill and Saipin Chutima, the owners of Lotus of Siam (953 E. Sahara Ave., Suite A5), have pulled out of their partnership with the entrepreneur who opened a second Lotus in New York City. Citing aesthetic differences and health reasons, the family will resume devoting their full-time energies to their Las Vegas outpost. The Apple, let’s face it, is a tough mistress.
Chef Lorin Watada is planning a terrific menu for Valentine’s Day at Bachi Burger (470 E. Windmill Lane, 242-4244), a Japanese-style kaiseki tasting for $40 per person. But he’s bowed to pressure from chef Rick Moonen and other advocates of sustainable eating and taken his bluefin tuna tartare off the proposed menu. So guests will have to be content with the likes of a lobster and uni chawan mushi, foie gras with persimmons and Yamamoto peaches, and other treats. Wine pairings are $10 extra. The menu will be served 5-11 p.m., by reservation only.
Meanwhile, the revitalization of downtown continues apace with the recent opening of Resnicks Grocery, an innovative market (900 Las Vegas Blvd. South, 982-2999, in the Soho Lofts. Billed as an “urban grocery,” the store, owned Sam Cherry, is the first Vegas retail outlet for the good breads made by artisan baker Carlos Pereira of Bon Bread, and also sells high-quality soft drinks, boutique foods and many other creative products. It’s also notable for the way foods are displayed, on cantilevered shelves under a faux tin ceiling. Think of it as the hippest convenience store in the valley.
Finally, it was announced last week that the fifth annual Vegas Uncorked—Bon Appetite’s landmark Vegas food event, hosted in part by the LVCVA—will be held May 5-8. The 2010 event featured 75 chefs and more than 30 sold-out events, as well as more than 100 winemakers and as many as 5,000 delirious food lovers.
This year, Vegas Uncorked will be held at Bellagio, Caesars Palace, Wynn, Mandalay Bay and the MGM Grand. The myriad events include After Hours at Tom Colicchio’s Craftsteak ($125), Eating Las Vegas at Bellagio’s Jasmine ($65), where authors/food journalists John Curtas, Al Mancini and yours truly will host a panel discussion, and of course, the Grand Tasting in the Garden of the Gods Pool Oasis at Caesars Palace ($200). Foodies be forewarned: Tickets sell out early. For individual event prices and information, visit VegasUncorked.com.