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Breakfast in Summerlin?

Nest month, I'll be in Vegas for 4 nights. Early one morning, we'll be off for a hike in Red Rock Canyon. Thereafter, we want to go to the Apple Store in Summerlin.

Is there a recommended place for breakfast in Summerlin that we could go to post hike and pre Apple?

Thanks very much.

Apr 13, 2015
cortez in Las Vegas

2 dinners in Shanghai?

My wife and I will be spending a couple of days in Shanghai on the front end of a Himalayan adventure. We have two open dinner slots for this first time visit to Shanghai and would appreciate your recommendations. Some details:

* we are staying on the Bund and would prefer to walk or not drive too far for dinner.
* on the first day, we are taking a walking tour of the Bund followed by a high end Cantonese lunch.
* second day is a walking tour of local food markets followed by lunch at a traditional Shanghai style restaurant
* for the two dinners, we are looking for a glimpse of modern Shanghai. Any style cuisine is fine. Price point is flexible. Prefer it not be too formal or staid. Lively, fun, delicious beats exquisite and quiet. Want to have fun and come away with an impression of Shanghai as a future oriented international city.

Any Chowhound recommendations?

Thanks very much.

Mar 11, 2015
cortez in China & Southeast Asia

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?

Not really a Bama Backer. But, for your post, you deserve a "Role Tide."

Nov 30, 2014
cortez in Not About Food

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?


Your VCR comment made my day. For a true sports fan, recording a game is done only if you want to see it twice or see it in its entirety after you learn the score. It's just about impossible to screen yourself from learning the score (ESPN, Yahoo, etc etc). So, watching it later has none of the suspense, drama or immediacy of seeing the game live.

To get a bit geeky on this topic, the power of sports on TV is increasingly related to the fact that fans need to see it live and will not stand for a delayed or recorded broadcast. This is in strong contrast to movies, serial shows (eg Downton Abbey) or regularly scheduled programs. You can watch those when you want and in bunches.

Not so with sports. You need to see it live! This gives sports programmers (eg ESPN) enormous clout with advertisers who know that their commercials will be seen vs skipped over when viewers are watching a taped version of a show. With this power, more and more sports make it onto TV where the networks compete for and pay big bucks for live programming.

A long winded response: a true sports fan will not be satisfied with a game recorded on the VCR!

Nov 27, 2014
cortez in Not About Food

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?

Again, thanks LeoLioness. This stereotyping of fans as pretzel and beer types is ignorant and a bit insulting. When I watch games at home, sushi/sashimi with French Champagne is the normal fare. My grown daughter expects and enjoys this when she watches games with her dad.

For Thanksgiving this year, I mentioned this thread to the hostess of tomorrow's dinner for 20, my sister in law. She doesn't watch much football. But, she stated clearly that she would never think of having the TV off. For her, this is a day of thanks, celebration and togetherness, not a solemn presentation.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?

Thanks Brook. Very kind.

Nov 24, 2014
cortez in Not About Food

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?


Your original question centered on "am I being snobbish?" in your disapproval of your friend's request to check the score of his favorite Thanksgiving football game.

Sorry to report, but "yes", you are being snobbish. You need to have more than 5 minutes of conversation with guests you invite. Sorry that you feel that football is below your threshold for that commitment to conversation.

Nov 24, 2014
cortez in Not About Food

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?

Bravo Leo.

Why does "how I was raised" evolve to become a firm rule as to how you treat your guests decades later? Seems inflexible, unnecessary and perhaps a bit condescending (at least those who enjoy football and thus are labelled as "bubbas").

Football during Thanksgiving dinner - am I a snob?

Bubba type here. IMO, your reaction and advice is way out of line.

* football is an established Thansgiving tradition for millions of people.
* Thanksgiving is not a Christian event. It's a civil, non sectarian celebration. Non Christians, non Americans and non believers particularly enjoy this very "Americaness" of the day. Why impose your prejudices and style on them?
* relax, enjoy the day and don't lay a guilt trip on guests who don't share your preferences.

Denver recommendations?

Thanks very much for these two recommendations. Their menus and ambiance both look terrific and the Tripadvisor comments are excellent.

Much appreciated.

Nov 06, 2014
cortez in Mountain States

Denver recommendations?

For an upcoming visit to Denver, I'd love your thoughts on great places for lunch or dinner. We'll be staying at the Hotel Teatro downtown and are likely to sample dinner at Nickel, the hotel restaurant, due to our late arrival and its new chef. He's from A16 in San Francisco, one of our favorite places.

We are looking for lively and fun with delicious food and an active bar rather than a more formal white table cloth environment. To give you a flavor of the places we enjoy in other cities, we really like the Purple Pig in Chicago, Bar at the Modern in NYC, Gjelina in Venice, The Walrus and the Carpenter in Seattle and Tosca in San Francisco.

We'd love to be able to walk to the restaurant or take a short Uber ride to the destination.

Thanks very much for your advice.

Nov 05, 2014
cortez in Mountain States

Wine or beer at Omae?

Just made a reservation for 4 at Omae for dinner in mid November. Two questions:

* does Omae have its liquor license yet?

* if not, can patrons BYOB or is it no alchohol for us?

Thanks for your help.

Oct 07, 2014
cortez in Las Vegas

Treasury Wine ends talks with bidders KKR and TPG

Too bad. Treasury badly needs a new direction together with a solid plan, top leadership and new cash. It's drifting.

Sep 30, 2014
cortez in Wine

Seattle trip report

Le Pichet has air conditioning. But, the manager chose to keep it off until we had been there an hour or so, eg, 7:30pm. It never had time to cool the room down.

Sep 11, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle



The Boon Fly and Carneros Inn came through in great shape. Lots of broken glassware but no apparent structural damage. I suspect modern construction codes and the lack of brick and stone prevented greater damage.

Downtown Napa, though further from the epicenter, suffered the most. More than 150 buildings were "red tagged" making them off limits for residential and commercial use. The concentration of older brick and stone buildings in central Napa proved very vulnerable to the quake.

Sep 07, 2014
cortez in Wine

Seattle trip report

Just finishing 4 days in Seattle celebrating a significant birthday of my brother. On this bros trip, we started w football at Century Link (try the spicy vegetarian chow mein at Section 108) and continued with more oysters than we thought possible. Had a great time.

Our list of favorites is below in order of our preference from best to disappointing.

* The Walrus and the Carpenter: the uber driver actually found this hard to reach place in Ballard. We would have perished en route if on our own. Wow. We loved it at the counter, ordering one course at a time: oysters, more oysters, Sigalas Assyrtyko, grilled sardines, padron peppers, more Sigalas, salmon. Fun, engaging and delicious.

* Quinn's Pub: we were a bit embarrassed to have neither tats nor piercings. But, felt entirely comfortable as the knowledgable bartender delivered excellent recommendations: beef tartare, tempura green beans, roasted tomatoes and grilled short rib steak. Wonderful and convivial.

* Seatown: breakfast near Pike Place Market. Rotisserie hash, egg sandwich with Dungeness crab. A keeper.

* Nola's on Bainbridge Island: comfortable Saturday brunch on relaxed and relaxing Bainbridge. Cioppino stocked with fresh seafood and a rich broth. Dungeness crab melt. Pinot Gris from Oregon on a sunny day on the patio.

* Shuckers at the Fairmont: this cozy, wood paneled bar surprised us. Great bartenders and multiple types of oysters to rival The Walrus. Friendly and fun.

Less successful:

* Le Pichet: had high hopes for this French bistro. Disappointing. Interior of the restaurant was way too hot for comfort. The dishes were routine and uninspired. Bland.
Wine was too hot to consume before 15 minutes in a bucket.

* Sazerac: at the Hotel Monaco. Looked like fun but was dead and not delicious. Oysters felt old and tired. Same with the menu.

Thank you Seattle. Very fun trip.

Sep 07, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

Del Mar suggestions?

For 6 days surrounding Thanksgiving, We'll be renting a cottage for four people walkable to central Del Mar. Would really appreciate your recommendations for nearby lunch/dinner places reachable on foot or drives within 10 minutes or so. All style cuisines and price points ok. We always like "delicious" and tend to gravitate towards places that:

* are lively and fun rather than formal
* offer seating at the bar for cocktails and dinner
* have great wine lists
* encourage sharing of several small plates

Also, we will probably BBQ at home a couple of times. Any great purveyors of fish, meat, veg, fruit, bread, etc. in the area?

Thanks very much for your advice.

Jul 04, 2014
cortez in San Diego

Dining Solo in LV on or near The Strip

Couple of thoughts for solo diner:

La Cave at Wynn creates rare intimacy in LV with its modest size and Barcelona-inspired food. Sit at the bar

L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon is bigger bucks but always a treat. Bar seating is only way to go.

Bartalotta, also at Wynn, at the bar. Small tasting of great pasta.

Jun 17, 2014
cortez in Las Vegas

Michael Mondavi family sells Carneros winery


Do you know anything about the new owner's winemaking plans? For years, I've been puzzled by the multi brand strategy of Michael Mondavi under his "Folio" umbrella at this property which he purchased from Francis Mahoney several years ago. I'm hoping that the new owner can bring focus and a quality orientation to this location.

Any insight you have would be great to hear. Thanks.

Jun 15, 2014
cortez in Wine

Guy's weekend in Seattle?

Thank you

May 24, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

Guy's weekend in Seattle?

OP here:

I'm searching for terrific and fun places to eat in Seattle. About 5 days ago, this thread took a radical turn towards all things public transport related. I don't care if we walk, bus, taxi or train to great restaurants.

Any further recs?

Thanks very much.

May 23, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

Rose wine I should seek out for the long hot summer.

For me, it's the pale salmon colored roses from Bandol or Cotes de Provence that hit the mark. Two favorites in the $16-20 range: Whispering Angel and Dragon. Delicious.

May 13, 2014
cortez in Wine

Guy's weekend in Seattle?

Thanks to all for these great recommendations. Can't wait.

Two followup questions:

* any opinions about Michael Mina's RN74? I've been one time to his SF location for this wine-centric restaurant. How's it doing in Seattle?

* I'm a college football nut and would love to go to a Saturday lunch at a respectable sports bar with decent to good food. Any candidates?

Thanks again.

Apr 26, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

Guy's weekend in Seattle?


Thanks so much. Which vendors MUST we try?

Apr 24, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

Guy's weekend in Seattle?

For a significant birthday celebration, my brother and I are coming to Seattle for a three day weekend in September. Looking for some Chowhound advice.

* scored two tickets to the NFL opener, Seahawks vs Packers. Any must eat/drink offerings at Centurylink field?
* we will be staying near Pike Place with no car. Would love to learn about fun and delicious options for seafood, regional specialties and Asian options nearby. Our preferred mode is to sit at the bar and work our way through the menu and wine list in a friendly, not too formal environment.
* to give guidance, some of the places we love in other cities include:
Chicago: Purple Pig, Girl and the Goat
San Francisco: Coqueta, Tosca, Slanted Door
Las Vegas: Raku, La Cave
New York: Spotted Pig, Momofuku ssam, bar at the Modern,
Yountville: Bouchon, Mustards, R+D Kitchen

Thanks for any advice you can add! Looking forward to the trip.

Apr 24, 2014
cortez in Greater Seattle

What are your thoughts of this restaurant corkage fee policy?

In the part of California where I live, the corkage is generally specified to be per 750 bottle. Twice that corkage for a magnum seems logical and fair. My local, local joint waives that corkage for me. But, that is a privilege I don't expect elsewhere.

Apr 16, 2014
cortez in Wine

question for european visitors... what surprised you the most about american restaurant culture

Two practices where Americans and Europeans have different traditions:

1. Eating at the bar: I much prefer eating at the bar rather than a table when I dine alone or with my wife (no good when there are three). An excellent bartender/waiter makes the meal with great service. People watching is great. Had lunch at the bar at Bouchon in Yountville just last week. Nothing better than that. Having lunch today at R +D Kitchen in Newport Beach. Can't beat that tuna tartare in a lively atmosphere.

My European (mostly British) can't fathom wanting to get food from the bartender. They were stunned when I searched London (mostly unsuccessfully) for an excellent restaurant with bar seating. Why would you want that, they asked? My only success at the bar in London was at Maze by Gordon Ramsey. Maze is all set up for dinner at the bar -- quite fun.

2. Early lunch: More so in Calif rather than NYC, lunch at 11:30 or even a bit earlier is very normal. At R+D today, I'll need to be there by 11:15 to assure a seat at the bar. My Australian friends were horrified that I suggested an 11:15am lunch at Gott's (formerly Taylor's Refresher). Don't want to be 30th in line at noon, I explained.

For European chowhounds, is there any momentum in Europe towards lunch at the bar or an earlier start time? Just curious to see how things are evolving, or not.

Mar 18, 2014
cortez in Not About Food

Wynn restaurants

Have stayed 3 times at Wynn in last 18 months. Love the the tower suites w upgrade provided by Amex FHR program


La Cave, Spanish theme in Barcelona ambiance in much smaller scale than typical Vegas place. Pre dinner to very late.

Country Club, at midday overlooking the course. Intimate and delicious.. Schockingly pleasant.

Wazuzzu, Asian fusion. Wonderful food. Very fun to watch hip, young Asian tourists eyeballing the cowboys and cowgirls in for the NFR rodeo finals in December.

Tableau: $80 daily breakfast credit from Amex. Wow!

Bartolotta: disappointing. Hyper expensive as you dine w conventioneers pushing their lanyards aside to consume Italian seafood and pasta. Atmosphere kills the cuisine.

Have fun

Mar 07, 2014
cortez in Las Vegas

Tempura: best beverage and appropriate etiquette?

Going to Japan in three weeks for my first visit. Will be trying a wide variety of cuisine styles including a high end tempura restaurant where each item (rotation of seafood and vegetables) is served individually at the counter, one piece at a time. Two questions:

* I've tried sake but can't get motivated for it even after a two hour tasting class covering wide ranging styles and price points. I drink more wine at home (Napa), but also enjoy beer from time to time. Any Chowhound beverage recs for fancy tempura?

* do you use chopsticks, your hands or both for tempura? I'm trying to avoid a major faux pas at my very first dinner in Japan. I couldn't find any mention of this issue in various articles and guidebooks covering tempura.

Thanks for your advice.

Mar 05, 2014
cortez in Japan

North American winery numbers

Yes, wine is completely distinct and not juice shared by other wine producers. And yes, fed tax is paid via the bonded winery when wine is removed to offsite storage.

Financial boundaries for small/medium producers and financial incentives for somewhat larger bonded wineries make this rational for both.

Go virtual!

Feb 09, 2014
cortez in Wine