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Carey

Brunch, Food, Live Like a Local, Moms, New & Hot, Restaurants, Reviews

Bottiglia at Green Valley Ranch

Fitting that Bottiglia ( pronounced boh-TEE-yah) means “bottle” because even if you don’t go for the food you will want to be there for the drinks. Styled as a European yup-scale 1960s farmhouse chic restaurant it’s the perfect blend of retro elegance and modern touches. I could not help but imagine Audrey Hepburn here; Breakfast at Tiffanys? Brunch at Bottiglia! Picture a gastro pub that has been white washed, studded with reclaimed wood furniture, pastel fabrics, geometric chrome accents and sporadic wicker whimsy. They must have designed their drinks according to their decor. YES, I want my bellini to match my plush peach seat and YES, I would love for you to make my white sangria smell like the bouquet on the back of my chair damnit! And YES, I want my Malbec to be inspired by my velvety fig colored booth. Pinks, peaches, plums, gold and robin-egg- blues? I’ll drink all of it please…….Oh and I’ll be waiting for my drinks on the wrap around terrace if you don’t mind, thank you. I know what you are thinking: this sounds all very…… feminine.

Don’t let the décor fool you though the fine dining side of things could impress the likes of Anthony Bourdaine. This IS a fancy Italian restaurant and they’ve got the Lobster Fra’ Diavolo to prove it. I think we can all agree, Italian cuisine is all about love and you can tell where Chef Patrick’s heart is: The sea…. The sea of love….. I want to tell you just how much… I love his Halibut….. Among other things. One word ANTIPASTA. Their mastery of wood-smoked eggplant spread is only surpassed by their straight up ownership of lemon ricotta stuffed zucchini blossoms. The tuna carpaccio blushes as deep as the beets in the roasted beet salad. The chopped salad is nothing short of an orgy of tart, tang and sweet kiss of green grapes. The eggplant parmesan? Miniature like a ballerina and just as ‘en pointe’ ( sul punto in Italian) If you want to get some romance get intimate with the appetizers. You’ll go home satisfied.

But let’s get back to that Halibut. You put a piece of fish in front of me and all of a sudden I look like  teenager that just had her first drink. I giggle, I wiggle and smile. Most sushi chefs think I’m flirting with them. Maybe I am and I don’t realize it, but if I am, it’s only because I’m part penguin. For that reason, the Pan Roasted Halibut spoke to me, even though I don’t speak Italian or even understand most Italian, that fish and I understood each other. It knew I would adore it no matter what. But the condiments and garnish excited me more than the fish by itself. The fish was laid on a bed of faro (thick fluffy grain) with a water color green butter sauce, dollops of carrot puree and then the peas (ohlordthepeas!) The peas were short spring inspired love poems, each a pleasurable burst inside my mouth whispering sweet nothings to the fish.

They didn’t have to bring anything else out. But they did and to be completely honest The Shrimp Puttanesca and the Lobster Fra’ Diavolo could have their way with me too. I KNOW I sound like a cheating foodie perv but if I could have a menage`a trois of fish shrimp and lobster in one sitting every time I dine at Bottiglia….. I WOULD. Both the shrimp and the lobster are equally spicy and beautiful. While sexy in name, puttanesca, meaning whore’s pasta, in Italian has become slang for “a bunch of sh*t in the cupboard goes in the pasta”. Classically, you need the capers and olives to kick the ever loving crap out of you in order to make this dish a success, which is what made this my favorite of the pastas, because capers are my life. The creamy pink sauce on the lobster though was seriously indulgent. It was almost like a deconstructed lobster ravioli. But a warning: if you don’t like you food to look at you, request the face to be removed cause you get the entire lobster.

Dish after dish was placed and removed by what seemed like six different super models which made the dinner feel like a seduction. If I can’t be seduced in Italy then I’ll gladly take a little Italian seduction in Henderson. So…. while I’m in the mood, I’ll tease you with some dessert. I’ll give you some hints: one melts in your mouth and the other was filled with fun ….. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination… Bon Apetit!

        

Reserve your table today: Bottiglia at Green Valley Ranch ***BRUNCH SERVICE BEGINS SUNDAY 28 AUG 2016***

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Truffles N Bacon Cafe : A Culinary Love Story

Welcome to my first sentence ever to post on a blog! I’m just a guest here. I don’t know how guest blogging works really or how many more of these you’ll see from me but I am so appreciative to Las Vegas Moms Blog for having me here. Blogging is fun. wheeeeeee!

TNB foodiesWhen Cee Cee from LVM asked me to come to a private lunch tasting at Truffles N Bacon AND write about it, I almost flipped. I think I actually squeed.  The name Truffles N Bacon, in my mind, evokes images of smoky fat crisped bacon and indulgently pungent truffle oil, right? Nope! I was totally wrong and super okay with it. Think sweet pork and chocolate with a little bit of South Pacific flair. Truffles N Bacon Cafe namesakes are attributed to their award winning bacon jam and their chocolate truffles. The chocolates are pretty self-explanatory: little rolled balls of chocolate covered in things. Simple and delicious. And then their bacon jam, so complex and versatile, they can (and do) put it in nearly everything. In fact, two of the foods that blew me away were dishes that both boasted the jam.

Our hostess, Magnolia, had prepared us a gorgeous French Countryside High Tea experience (sans tea.) Wild flowers floating in tea cups placed on floral chiffon table cloths next to 6 types of finger foods piled on porcelain hors d’oeuvre tiers.  Each tier of food was labeled. The entrees: The Lucia, Kahlua sliders, Mad Bird and Not Yo Mamma Mac. And the dessert:  Cocoa powder dusted chocolate truffles, coconut covered chocolate truffles and balsamic strawberries.

Kahlua Sliders

Kahlua Sliders

As the Instagram pros got up to start their photo shoot, I started swilling down water to keep from sweating and swearing in public: At that moment I hated myself for not ever taking up photography. I also had not eaten all day in anticipation of this tasting and I was starting to imagine fight scenes between lions and hyenas.  After the sandwiches had been staged or “styled” and were taken away to be snapchatted, periscoped, and instagrammed, the writers felt comfortable enough to loiter around the tables and sneak away with plates of food.

I have a confession to make. Even though I tried and enjoyed all of the foods we tasted, there are two I really want to talk about and it’s because they are, in my opinion, extraordinary. While the Mad Bird (the turkey burger with pepper jack cheese, roasted tomatoes, artichokes and sriracha avocado spread on ciabatta) and the Kahlua Sliders (slow roasted pork shoulder with tropical slaw on Hawaiian sweet roll) were lovely and delicious, I am in awe of Not Yo Momma Mac and I am in love with The Lucia.

Not Yo Momma Mac is THE unicorn of macaroni and cheese. It’s the mythical mysterious mac that has eluded me for years. I knew something like it existed but could never find it….until now. This is nothing short of ambrosia.  As if unadulterated mac and cheese wasn’t good enough, TNB had the audacity to put pieces of brisket, kale and their signature bacon jam in theirs and thank the gods they did. I want to dump truck the entire dish in my mouth and drown in it. This is pure creamy, crispy, spicy, smoky, melty, sweetness. I have found the mac and cheese Valhalla. I can die now.

The Lucia

The Lucia

And yet, as magical as the mac and cheese was nothing compares to the Lucia. This is my love letter to a sandwich… I think about you my beautiful grilled cheese, aka my finger food soul mate, EVERY DAY. Cheddar, bacon jam, tomato compote, chipotle ranch spread an on grilled white toast. The smokiness of the tomatoes in a bath of chipotle and the sweetness of the bacon jam is everything I never knew I wanted. That sandwich did something to me.  I find myself humming the Andrea Bocelli tune “Santa Lucia” throughout the day. I often think about making my own grilled cheese but then… it just wouldn’t be the same. My friends say I am changed. I didn’t realize I was empty until I had this sandwich. If it is possible for Tesla, one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century (and possibly ever) to be in love with a pigeon, then I believe it is possible for a 21st century girl, to be in love with a sandwich (especially in the current dating climate).

The bacon jam dishes should be enough of a reason to visit Truffles N Bacon Cafe, but if food isn’t really your thing, they double as an art gallery and offer high tea service too. You just have to call ahead to schedule it. I plan on doing that soon. (I need to visit my boyfriend Lucia, anyway)

photo credit: 
Erik Kastner and Arianna Domingo of Fifty Fifty Studios
LVM: Cee Cee Bautista
via Instagram: @happytummy_702@ninser_the_foodie, @hei02miyachi

TNB 2    

Truffles N Bacon Cafe
8872 South Eastern Ave, Ste 100
Las Vegas, NV 89123
702-503-1102

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