Michael’s—Classic Vegas Gourmet Room Stands the
Test of Time
One of Las Vegas’s oldest gourmet rooms is still thriving and will take you back to mid-20th century Vegas when every casino had a classy gourmet room. Michael’s Gourmet Room, named for owner Michael Gaughan, opened in 1982 at the old Barbary Coast and was transplanted to the South Point in 2007 at that time called South Coast. It would appear that only the location changed and what remained the same were its décor, menu and executive chef.
As for the décor, a romantic vibe exudes in the 50-seat room, with the signature stained glass dome and doors at the entrance brought from its first home at the Barbary Coast, as well as the elegant red velvet booths and chairs that resemble the feel and look of thrones. Executive Chef Fred Bielak has helmed the kitchen since opening day and Maitre D’ Jose Martel has been serving since the restaurant’s second year of operation. Evidently the old adage if it’s not broke, don’t fix it also applies to the menu, as you’ll find the same classic dishes that have reigned supreme since the 1980s, such as Scampi Fra Diavolo, Maryland Lump Crab Cocktail, Fresh Sea Bass, William J’s Salad avocado, peeled tomato and hearts of palm, Double Rib Spring Lamb Chops with mint jelly and Filet Mignon with Champignon mushroom sauce. Chef Bielak takes great care to make sure presentation of every dish is a work of art, with colorful garnishes such as radish leaves and red stuffed tomato adorning dishes, and the Crab Cocktail that arrives in a lighted ice casing.
Chivalry is alive and well here as there are his and her menus, one with prices and one without. Part of the old time Vegas charm are service aspects you rarely encounter in the 21st century. The service exudes class, with a tuxedoed captain, two waiters and a bus boy for every five tables. And while they are not hovering over you while you dine, there’s always someone within eyesight to anticipate what your request will be and have it provided before you ask. Service is also an interactive part of your meal, as salads are dressed tableside, sauces are heated on a cart with a burner immediately before being served and desserts of Bananas Foster and Cherries Jubilee are a pyrotechnic show as well as a scrumptious delight.
Rest assured you won’t leave hungry, for every meal includes a relish tray filled with hard boiled quail egg, sweet peppers, pickled beet, jicama, cucumber, cauliflower, sweet pickles and olives accompanied with Lavage Armenian pita bread; and a cream cheese mixture that is so delectable you will find it hard not to devour every last morsel of it. Before your entrée is served you are treated to a palate-cleansing sorbet topped with Dom Perignon. While the aforementioned desserts are worthy of the show alone, your meal is concluded with a plate filled with petit fours, and chocolate covered banana, strawberry, cherry, apricot and apple.
As for recognition of its excellence, Michael’s awards have included being named one of the Top 5 Restaurants in Las Vegas by the Zagat Survey; it received the Four-Diamond Award for Exceptional Cuisine, Excellent Service, and Elegant Dining Atmosphere from the American Automobile Association; the Award of Excellence from Distinguished Restaurants of North America; and the Finest Gourmet Restaurant recognition from the Las Vegas Review-Journal Readers’ Poll.
Michael’s continues to stand the test of time and has an army of regular customers who return again and again for special occasions, celebrations or just a well-deserved treat of an unequaled gourmet dining experience.
PizzaRev Opens 2nd Location and Upgrades Menu
PizzaRev opened its first Vegas location this past winter next to Sunset Station in Henderson and recently followed with a second on Rainbow south of the 215 Freeway. Now it’s introduced a thicker double crust to accommodate those like myself who like to load on the ingredients and the $7.99 all-inclusive price includes as many as your heart desires and the following deals: Monday Meal Deal after 2 p.m.—4 pizzas, 4 drinks, a family sized salad, and Oreo dessert pizza for $39.95; Rev Up Tuesday—$6 pizza or entrée salad; and The Perfect Pair—a daily happy hour offer of pizza and beer for $9.95 from 4-6 p.m. and 8 p.m. until closing.