Sa­vory Bites & Neon Lights

DRIFT Travel magazine - - The Travelling editor - BY: DON­ALD CONTURSI

On a re­cent trip to Las Ve­gas, I couldn’t wait to ex­plore all the fine restau­rants this glit­ter­ing city has to of­fer. But with only so many free hours and only so much stom­ach ca­pac­ity, I knew I had to choose wisely from the hun­dreds of es­tab­lish­ments here. Thank­fully, I dis­cov­ered the “Sa­vory Bites & Neon Lights’’ culi­nary tour by Lip Smack­ing Foodie Tours, which took the guess­work out of it all.

The com­pany did all the work for me – vet­ting the best restau­rants to not only come up with a cu­rated tour to five of the most pre­em­i­nent ones on the Ve­gas Strip, but also to select the most note­wor­thy three or four dishes at each one to try. The five-hour ex­pe­ri­ence was so ef­fi­cient. I never would have been able to make it to that many restau­rants on my own in one night. Plus, I prac­ti­cally felt like roy­alty. At ev­ery res­tau­rant vis­ited, I never had to wait in line; I was just whisked to a great ta­ble al­ready set up for our tour group.

It was the ul­ti­mate in pam­per­ing. This ex­cit­ing evening started at 6 p.m. in front of the ARIA Re­sort & Casino, where we then walked to five nearby restau­rants: Bar­dot Brasserie and Sage at ARIA, Es­tia­to­rio Mi­los and Scar­petta at The Cos­mopoli­tan of Las Ve­gas, and Cucina by Wolf­gang Puck in­side The Shops at Crys­tals. At each stop, our group spent about 30 min­utes en­joy­ing gourmet eats such as es­car­got at Bar­dot Brasserie and grilled oc­to­pus at Es­tia­to­rio Mi­los, while lis­ten­ing to our tour guide tell us fas­ci­nat­ing facts and stories about the city and re­sorts.

We were then driven by shut­tle to Mav­er­ick He­li­copters ter­mi­nal, where we boarded a he­li­copter for a beau­ti­ful flight over the Strip, al­low­ing us to see Ve­gas in a whole dif­fer­ent way – high above with a bird’s eye view of the Strato­sphere, and other land­mark re­sorts, all mag­i­cally lit up at night.

At the end of the night, I was con­ve­niently dropped off at my ho­tel by the shut­tle. The cost of the tour was $299 per per­son. It was money well spent, con­sid­er­ing all the restau­rants we vis­ited, the ar­ray of dishes we got to try, and the in­cred­i­ble he­li­copter tour that none of us would have prob­a­bly ever thought to do oth­er­wise.

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