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Monday, February 18, 2008

A Different Kind of Fish Story

That beautiful fish in the picture above has a funny little story to it. Back in August of 2005, Dan was going to be in Vegas for a work shin-dig. This little shin-dig was being held at the newly opened Wynn Resort and I was going out to spend the weekend. They offered people discounted room prices if they wanted to stay on for a few days, so we decided to take advantage. Our friend Alicia and her ex decided to join us for the weekend and they were fortunate to get a wonderful room rate too.
We had recently received a Wine Spectator magazine that had a large write up about the Wynn and it's restaurants and I decided we had to eat at Bartolotta Ristorante Di Mare. Paul Bartolotta had the reputation of being a very good chef/owner and I wanted to try this place out. We had reservations for dinner on August 25, 2005 and we had a wonderful, if somewhat surprising, evening.
The restaurant is a large and open space, with this incredible stairway that takes you down into the dining area. We had a nice table with a great view of lake. I imagine that most tables have a great view of the water, because of all the windows. We were promptly greeted by our server, who was very attentive and had a great personality. He brought out a tray of fresh fish and explained each one as far as texture and taste. He told us that the fish were flown in daily from the Mediterranean and were caught that day! There was even a spiny little lobster walking around the tray that really tried to make an escape.
We ordered our food and pretty much decided to go family style. Our waiter explained that most people did it that way and we would all be able to try out different dishes. Since we had decided to order a whole fish, I wanted a steak, just in case I did not like the fish. I don't remember any of the food being bad, in fact it was all quite wonderful. The only bad thing was my piece of fish had bones in it(this always happens to me) and I almost swallowed a bone.
We ordered a bottle each of Pelligrino and Panna water for $7. We had 2 bottles of Pieropan Soa Seppia (I had read about how good it was) at $44 a piece. One of our appetizers was a special ($19) and I believe it was calamari? We also ordered the Cocotte di Parmigiano-Reggiano ($16.50). It was a wonderful warm custard made with the aforementioned cheeses and topped with wild mushrooms. Paul ordered the Zuppa Pesce ($42) and I believe he ate the entire thing by himself.
We had a bowl of Tagliatelle con Pocini ($16.00), with home made noodles and mushrooms. The beautiful and melt-in-your-mouth Costata di Manzo al Sangiovese ($47), which was an 18 ounce ribeye. The fish arrived and was cut up tableside just like they do it in Italy. The fish was called Urbina, a type of Sea Bass if I remember correctly. We finished the meal with a couple of desserts, one a gelato and the other a budino, an Italian pudding.
You would think by the way we were ordering food that we had not eaten in awhile and that money was no object. Sometimes you just get carried away in these situations and when the food and service are outstanding you just go with the flow. Our waiter brought us our bill and we all about fell out of our seats. The total was $507.00 and that was without a tip! It seemes that our fish was quite expensive, coming in at $170.00!! That fish must have flown first-class.
It was a wonderful evening and one that none of us will ever forget. Nor will any of us likely order like that again!!
The restaurant is located in the Wynn Resort at 3131 Las Vegas Blvd S. Las Vegas NV 89109.


Andrew said...

you goof ball, just from the prices you casually listed, you were already at $260!!! that fish does look delicious though...

Alicia said...

The one part of this delightful story that is left out is as I recall when we were deciding on the fish, the waiter offers that since it was sold by weight, it would run somewhere in the neighborhood of $40 - $50...I think the end result was so unbelieveable since we were prepared for it to cost much less!