Las Vegas, Part 1

14 September 2015, 11:48

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Aaaand we’re in Vegas, baby! Las Vegas was pretty much everything I imagined- the flashing lights, the insane amounts of food at buffets, AND THE RIDICULOUSLY CHEAP AND GINORMOUS SIZED DRINKS! Yep that was one tasty margarita and yes I managed to pack that leg in our suitcase :P

We stayed at Paris (3655 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas) because hey it was our first time in Vegas and I wanted that gaudy crazy experience! I picked Paris over New York because all the reviews said New York was more family friendly and having little kids near me was exactly the last thing I wanted and also because it was on the end of the Strip that had more attractions and shopping.

The view from our room! We unfortunately missed out on dining inside the Eiffel Tower and I was pretty devastated that we’d arrived in a period where there weren’t any Britney Spears shows.

So to drown my sorrows we rocked up to the Bellagio (3600 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas) which was opposite Paris and supposedly has the best buffet in all of Vegas. I say supposedly because initially my aim was to get the 24 hours buffet pass and try a couple of the buffets during our stay. However this buffet defeated us. For starters there’s this giant station filled with crab legs! There were prawns aplenty, smoked fish and sashimi, five types of pasta and all the vegetables were covered in butter or cream.

There was a whole area dedicated to a different cut of meat and the chef will slice and plate for you! Prime rib, flank, turkey, roast pork and lamb were all super tasty but the prime rib was my fave- super juicy and melt in your mouth tender. There was a row of pizzas, an area for soups filled with so much cream my heart skipped a beat, and a token salad bar where the main feature was crispy bacon mmm bacon.

We arrived at the buffet around 4pm so there wasn’t much of a line to get in (I’d heard horror stories for hour long waits). There was plenty of variety however this also meant that the displays weren’t full to the brim so my photos of the dessert display kinda looks sad my bad. From memory I consumed: coffee soaked tiramisu’s, rich chocolate eclairs, fruit tarts with uber buttery pastry, freakishly sweet mini key lime pie, fudgey brownies, jiggly pannacottas, waffle cups filled with nutella mousse and a swirl or two from the soft serve machine.

And flan! With the perfect amount of wobble, the flan was so smooth and so rich! The buffet was $US34.99pp and I reckon if you’re in Vegas you just gotta try a buffet just to see how insane they are.

We needed to walk around to digest so we oggled the gaming floor and played a few rounds of blackjack and tried our ‘luck’ at the one arms bandits and then made our way outside to watch the Bellagio Fountains show. It is crazy hot in Vegas because you’re basically surrounded by desert so we made our way back across the road and into the safety of air conditioning at Planet Hollywood. We got a little shopping in before walking to Bally’s Casino which linked back to Paris. I loved how the ceiling is painted the perfect shade of sky blue complete with fluffy cloud so there’s that illusion you’re outside and it’s forever daytime.

We were debating taking a gondola ride at The Venetian Casino but the wait time was 2hrs+ so we just walked along the canal and took a double-decker bus to go up and down the Strip (buy the 24-hour unlimited pass $8) because man that’s a lot of walking.

But luckily there’s refreshments every meter or so with frozen drinks in all the colours of the rainbow! I found it weird that it’s perfectly legal to walk around the Strip with an open container of alcohol but you’re not allowed onto public transport if you have an open cup of Coke.

We spotted this vending machine in the lobby of a casino selling caviar. CAVIAR!

We were sticking to the west coast of USA this trip so I was sad there wouldn’t be any Shake Shack until Google told me there was a Shake Shack location in the New York Casino (3790 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas). Success! SmokeShack (US$6.69), ShackBurger (US$5.19), Cheese Fries (US$3.95) and Shack-made Lemonade (US$2.75).

Ohhhh yeah! I’ve always been pro-In n Out but I turned to Shake Shack after this SmokeShack burger because, bacon! The applewood smoked bacon is the bomb yo! Juicy patty + melty cheese + dat bacon = ALL THE LOVE IN THE WORLD.

And then somehow we stumbled into White Castle (Casino Royale Hotel, 3411 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas) and I was so full but I REALLY WANTED IT. Solely because of Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle and that ep of Ugly Betty haha so I ordered 1 Cheese Slider (US$0.98) and the server thought I meant 1 dozen because apparently noone buys just 1 slider lol

It’s so teensy tiny right? I didn’t realise the patty would be so thin, it kinda reminded me of bak kwa but thankfully it wasn’t chewy and I fell in love with the fluffy bread. Next time I will order a dozen and do White Castle the proper way I swear!

Stay tuned for Part 2 where we visit the Grand Canyon and Heart Attack Grill!

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Los Angeles Eats 2015

7 September 2015, 00:09

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I love In-n-Out. I am borderline fanatical about these damn burgers and yes it’s the first thing we ate after we dropped our bags at our AirBnB and set off for burger nirvana. Animal fries from the secret menu of course and 2 double double’s, 1 with grilled onion and 1 with no lettuce. I freaking love how the burgers are nestled in their little burger packet and sitting upright to see the burger layers in all their perfection! This post is a bit of a round up, Eggslut and The Boiling Crab get their own posts because they were out of this world awesome and a definite must visit.

I was determined to visit Santa Monica Pier because I watch a helluva lot of teevee and wanted to see the pier irl to see where the scenes were filmed for Sarah Connor Chronicles, Flashforward, Castle, Chuck, Touch, Modern Family and of course, Gilmore Girls! I thought the Pier was longer but other than that it was exactly as I imagined it- full of tourists with their selfie sticks, locals jogging up and down the beach and buskers aplenty.

We wandered around the for a while as there was a 1 hour wait at Blue Plate Oysterette (1355 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica) but it was totally worth it and I don’t care if people say it’s a tourist trap, the food was awesome and the service was super friendly. We ordered a Lobster Roll ($25) each and it’s a pretty big size, the brioche roll was split in half, toasted and stuffed with juicy lobster pieces and see that little pot of melted butter? MELTED BUTTER IS GLORIOUS! I poured about half of it into my roll and then set about dunking fries in it haha I really should go for a cholesterol check soon.

Back in Hollywood and Noods wanted to hit a food truck so we uber’d to El Flamin Taco Truck (6200 Sunset Blvd, Hollywood) because I’d previously tried the tacos with Helen and Lex on our eat all the donuts trip 2 years ago.

The Hollywood location sadly didn’t have the quesadilla cart attached but no matter for the tacos are pretty damn amazing! I ordered the chorizo, beef and pork and they were all so tasty I instantly regretted having to share. The tortilla is pillow soft and yet is able to hold all the ingredients without it instantly going soggy.

And then the fun part of customising your tacos with whatever toppings your heart desires- I went for a mountain of coriander, pico de gallo salsa and some kinda spicy sauce that almost kicked me in the face with how spicy it was.

Oh and because I wanted carbs I ordered the Carne Asada Fries which were freaking massive! Golden fries + juicy steak + cheese = muy deliciosa!

The reason I didn’t order more food was because we were headed to Roscoe’s Fried Chicken and Waffles (1514 North Gower Street, Hollywood) for dinner and I uh didn’t realise it was literally around the corner haha good thing there was a queue so we had time to digest! The fried chicken was ace with golden, crispy skin and juicy meat but sadly the waffles seemed a lil anaemic and kinda reminded me of eating a maccas ice cream cone. And no, that’s not ice cream on the waffles that’s butter :P

And of course there were many donuts to be eaten! Not as many as before but still. Randy’s Donuts (805 W Manchester Blvd, Inglewood) is a bit of a trek since it’s in the middle of nowhere but teehee GIANT DONUT!

Helloooo caramel glazed donut! Even though Randy’s is open 24 hours they didn’t have much of a selection when we went around 1am and there were quite a few people around so maybe we were too early for the next wave of freshly fried treats? We uberd back into the city and our driver was so awesome and made pit stops at other donut shops that he liked so we could duck out and grab a box to eat at home heh dat service

Aaaand I leave you with this grilled cheese sandwich that was also stuffed with macaroni & cheese and bacon mmm this was insane, super cheesy and something I totally want to recreate haha this baby was from the Grilled Cheese food truck that had set up shop in downtown LA during the 4th of July festivities.

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Chester White Cured Diner, Potts Point

30 August 2015, 17:18

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So Noods went to the Hunter Valley for the weekend away with the boys, leaving me unsupervised which meant I may have bought 3 pairs of shoes, 2 books about robots, 6 boxes of Kit Kats, 3 handbags, a 17g Madame Truffles truffle, truffle ice cream and truffle salt. Yeah I dunno how that happened but the highlight of my weekend was having lunch with Viv, Sarah and Eric at Chester White Cured Diner with a sneaky beverage or two.

The place is pretty tiny, the bar runs the length of the room and behind the counter hangs an entire row of cured meats. So first things first, we order the Meat Platter (2 meats with sides $20, added 2 more meats for $6 each). We choose the Culatello ITA (King of cured meats! the menu exclaims), Truffle Salami, Sopressa Salami and Fennel Garlic Salami and the board is crammed with pickled carrots, cauliflower and radishes, bread, slabs of asiago and fontina cheeses and of course some olives.

We love the culatello which is similar to proscuitto but has a much more intense flavour and the heady aroma of the Truffle Salami has me weak at the knees. The fennel and garlic salami would’ve been awesome if it was a bit more garlic-y but it’s still tasty as is the sopressa washed down with a Negroni ($16) that is perfect for this almost spring weather.

We were actually thinking of heading to Buffalo Dining Club, Chester White’s sister restaurant in Darlinghurst- for their Spaghetti in a wheel of cheese, but then we heard about Chester White’s Truffled Spaghetti Cacio E Pepe ($22).

DAT TRUFFLE SCENT! Spaghetti, olive oil and pepper is mixed in the wheel so flakes of deeelicious truffle parmesan is scraped off ermahgerd if you love truffle you will love this! The pasta has a satisfying chew and as we scrape the plate clean I quietly contemplate ordering a second round.

And we couldn’t resist ordering the Not Chester Carbonara ($20) made with casarecce pasta, organic porcini mushrooms and speck.

Oooh yeah, mix it goood

Speck! My god how good is speck?! That fat, that flavour, THOSE GLORIOUSLY CRISPY NUBBINS! Each twisty pasta shell was coated in rich egg yolk so that the earthy mushrooms and bits of speck clung on for dear life before being delivered to my soul.

Oh and there’s the house made chilli sauce if you like a bit of spice.

I heart their plates hahaha

Not wanting to share, we ordered a round of the Cheeky Tiramisu ($5 each) which arrive in the cutest little mugs. It is the perfect ratio of cream and coffee soaked savoiardi biscuits and it turns out to be the perfect size for us after all the pasta.

Jars of house made pickles all lined up.

I love that Chester White has that Potts Point hipster vibe and the brilliant service, incredible pastas and tasty meats has secured a special place in my pasta loving heart.

Chester White Cured Diner
3 Orwell St,
Potts Point

Trading hours:
Wed – Thurs: 5pm – 11pm
Fri – Sat: 12pm – 11pm

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