The Perfect Dining Experience

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It is so beautiful here, and with reports of rain, hail and wind at home, I don’t ever want to leave!

Yesterday Ben and I spent the afternoon strolling the strip, stopping everywhere from O’Sheas, to recall beer pong memories of vacation past,

photo

to the MGM Grand Hotel to see the live lions!

Lionesses, actually. They were snoozing on top of the see-through tunnel you can walk through, but it was still cool to have 2 MASSIVE lions sleeping 4 feet above your head. 

Bah!

This photo is my favorite – check out Ben’s face! Aww… ;) 

My luck has completely run out at the penny slot machines, so after losses experienced all along the strip, we threw in the towel and got ready for a nice dinner.

 

Sushi at Koi inside Planet Hollywood!

 

We haven’t been eating or drinking like maniacs on this trip, but a light and fresh seafood dinner sounded absolutely irresistible.

Plus it was happy hour, so rolls and drinks were half off!

 

The lounge of Koi is done up in chic, dark wood with a brightly lit bar. So pretty.

We were some of the first to arrive, so our rolls came right out. Tons of California Rolls, packed with crab and creamy avocado, and Spicy Tuna on Crispy Rice.

DEE-molished.

After dinner we headed to my favorite hotel in Las Vegas – The Bellagio. You know, the one with the fountains! :D We sat out on the patio of the little lounge with the red canopy (this picture was taken today, so you can see it!)

and sat back with a few cocktails to enjoy the fountain show played every 15 minutes or so in the evenings.

The air was warm,

the view was unmatched,

 

and the cocktails were good! Lemon & vanilla infused Makers Mark for him and Peach Sangria for her.

 

Let the show begin!

Only in Vegas! :mrgreen:

This morning we were up and at ‘em – I had brunch on the brain!

We headed over to Cesar’s Palace,

stopped for a photo op (muwahahaha!)

and arrived at our destination – Max Brenner’s Chocolate Shop in the forum shops at Caesar’s Palace!

I read about this place in the in-flight magazine on the way to Vegas, which raved about the luscious chocolate indulgences like chocolate shots, chocolate pizza and hand-crafted chocolate truffles you’d find there.

Then Hillary told me about their crazy-good restaurant menu, which totally sold me!

You feel like you’re in the center of a chocolate bar when you walk in, and the smell, as you can imagine, is intoxicating. Chocolate nirvana!

The sweets menu we perused before digging into the savory menu melted my mind – chocolate shots, crepes and hot chocolate, oh my! – and the savory menu was equally as decadent.

I had to have the waitress come back THREE times, because I just couldn’t make up my mind on what to get. That NEVER happens to me!

I finally settled on mini Monte Cristo Sliders and Molly’s White Corn Croquettes. 

Squeal!

The croquettes, which ok – look like potato oles – were crispy, light, stuffed with creamy cheese and bursting with sweet, corn flavor. Bomb, bomb, bomb.

But the baby cristos stole my heart! Look at them!

Thick brioche, stuffed with ham, turkey, swiss and bacon, then generously dusted with powdered sugar. My ideal meal!

Especially when I dunked them in the sweet, maple syrup that came on my plate. Unbelievable. I will be recreating this at home!

I couldn’t eat at a chocolate shop without having some chocolate, for Heaven’s sake, so we stopped at the adjoining store on the way out to admire the rows and rows of hand-crafted truffles.

Oh these were so cute – “hug mugs” – hot chocolate mugs perfectly shaped to “hug” in both your hands!

After a brutal internal debate, I chose the Praline cream mixed with caramelized pecan truffle.

It was everything I imagined it to be.

Two bites, with a creamy, crispy chocolate-caramel center. Ahhhh. What a perfect dining experience!

 

And with that – I’m off to go enjoy my final afternoon in Vegas! Ben and I are getting ready to share what our “perfect last night” would be. I’m thinking his will involve a significant amount of time sitting in the Sports Book at our hotel, betting on basketball games, and I have no idea yet what mine will look like.

Off to think! :D

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