Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013 | 12:58 p.m.
Fall is fantastic for food in Las Vegas, and Taste America events benefiting the James Beard Foundation over the weekend were proof.
Chef Akira Back hosted a chef tasting reception at his Yellowtail in the Bellagio on Friday afternoon, while chefs Joel Robuchon, Claude Le-Tohic and Steve Benjamin hosted a tasting reception for chefs Friday night at L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon at the MGM Grand.
Saturday night’s outdoor dine-around at Mirage Pool, with perfect weather, included Masaharu Morimoto, who is opening a restaurant at the Mirage next year; Christian Schmidt (Mirage); Eric Klein (Spago); Brian Massie (Stack); Laurent Tourondel (BLT Burger); and Malcolm Mitchell (Mint Gastro Pub in Richmond, Va.).
Plus, James Beard Award winners Saipin Chutima (Lotus of Siam, and I believe the only female James Beard Award winner in town), Luciano Pellegrini (Valentino), Paul Bartolotta (Ristorante di Mare) and Francois Payard (Payard).
The standout beverage of the evening was Beau Joie Champagne (rose and brut), in taste and look — produced in Epernay, France, the bubbly is crisp and clean to the finish, and, most strikingly, the bottles are covered in 100 percent copper armor, inspired by Knights and Royalty (the premise for making Champagne for the king of France), that is second-generation recycled material.
Champagne with a conscience and culture. We’ll toast to that.
Don Chareunsy is senior editor for arts and entertainment of the Las Vegas Sun.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Sun A&E Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.
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MGM Grand, a AAA Four Diamond resort, offers 5,044 rooms and suites.
MGM Grand features KÀ by Cirque du Soleil; Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club; and world-class entertainment at the Grand Garden Arena and Hollywood Theatre.
The resort offers signature restaurants by celebrity chefs including Tom Colicchio’s Craftsteak, Emeril Lagasse’s New Orleans Fish House, Wolfgang Puck’s Bar & Grill and Michelin three star and Forbes Five Star restaurant, Joël Robuchon.
As part of its ongoing “Grand Renovation,” MGM Grand has remodeled all rooms and suites in its main tower and is adding several new experiences to its lineup including Hakkasan Las Vegas Restaurant and Nightclub, a new upscale dining/nightlife concept (coming in April 2013).
MGM Grand also features a state-of-the-art, non-smoking conference center, the Grand Spa, Cristophe Salon, "CSI: The Experience" and an inviting pool complex featuring the tantalizing daylife of Wet Republic.
Upscale accommodations include The Mansion, an exclusive hotel within the hotel; the luxurious two-story SKYLOFTS at MGM Grand; and The Signature at MGM Grand, a luxury all-suite, non-gaming hotel located adjacent to the main resort.