Thursday, October 23, 2008

Mini Foodventure #81: Table 10 (Las Vegas)

Finishing up my long Vegas weekend, my friends and I did our farewell lunch at Table 10. It was a bit out-of-the-ordinary, since we usually do a blowout brunch buffet to ease us into a food coma for the four hour drive home, but we're all older now and snarfing down three-plus plates of breakfast and lunch fare *will* show. So no complaints here for sensible, and hopefuly tasty, eating at Emeril's Vegas outpost.

Like all the other celebrity chefs, Mr. BAM! Emeril Lagasse is no stranger to franchising to Sin City -- there's also
Delmonico in the Venetian and Fish House at MGM Grand. But Table 10 is closest, and open for lunch, so that's where we went. When I saw the menu, I didn't know what to make of it: peppercorn seared ahi tuna, cuban-style kurobuta pork sandwich, asian style lettuce wraps with raw hamachi.

Of course, there's some Cajun food representation with gumbo and jambalaya, but it was literally all over the map, and I am starting to wonder if the kitchen can pull it off.

The cocktail list though, looked pretty interesting, still feeling the gin love from my recent dinner at DB Brasserie, I ordered a lychee gin martini. It was great smelling but a bit too sweet and ultimately not that remarkable. I was more impressed with my friend's equivalent of a bourbon swizzle (pictured above): the fizz from the club soda really helps open up the bourbon while mellowing out some of the astringency.
Since one of my friends and I already planned on getting dessert, we decided to split an appetizer and an entreƩ. For starters, we had their Prince Edward Island mussels with homemade bacon and leeks in a saffron broth. Very aromatic and wonderfully smoky from the bacon. And though mussels are my least favorite of bivalves, these were delicious -- no off-flavors and a nice oceany brine taste. Of course, we took extra slices of bread to soak up that wonderful broth!

For the main, pasta jambalaya, basically all the components of a regular one with the fettucine in place of rice. The meaty components are well done; shrimp nicely cooked and wonderfully seasoned, chicken was juicy and the sausage flavorful. My bigger gripe is wtih the sauce, which was a pretty bland, albeit rich, tomato sauce. It wasn't bad, but definitely a bit disappointing for a man who built himself around spice-blasting every dish.

We also tasted our friends' dishes, which ranges from OK (the cuban pork sandwich, lobster mac 'n cheese) to pretty good (like the pictured above crabcakes with avocado mousse and chorizo). Overall, no complaints but no high praises either.
For desserts, my friend and I splitted their sampler trio, which consisted of a torte-like Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee-chocolate cake with Kahlua syrup and peanut brittle, "fruit on the bottom" lemon creme brulee with blueberry jam and shortbread cookie, and white chocolate malassadas (Portuguese doughnuts) with cinnamon sugar and creme anglaise. All three were decent, but I was particularly pleased with the creme brulee, the tart lemon custard and the blueberries really cut into the usual heaviness of that dish.

My favorite dessert of all, however, was the flourless chocolate bourbon cake that another friend ordered. Rich in flavors and not too terribly sweet, it went wonderfully with the equally well-balanced brown sugar creme fraiche and the tart cherry compote. Kind of a spiked black forest cake!

In short, it was a pleasant lunch to wrap things up in Sin City -- definitely classier than a buffet. But would I return? The only things that stood out in my mind was the starter, cocktails and desserts (actually, they had a pretty impressive coffee service too, custom-brewed and allowing you to choose which blend / origin of beans you want) so I may be back for a quick sweet bite and sip. Not-so-much for a full-on meal especially given so many yet-to-try options going on there.

And with that, let's return to regularly scheduled LA/OC programming . . .

Table 10 at the Palazzo
3327 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 607-6363

Table 10 (Palazzo) on Urbanspoon



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