Epicurean Affair
April 23, 2009

"Tantalize your senses at Las Vegas' hottest gourmet event."
"The gourmet event of the year."
"An event that offers its guests the best of everything."

Pretty bold promises. This annual event, held around the Flamingo pool, is similar in concept to grand tasting's around the country, including one held just weeks later as part of Vegas Uncork'd. Information on various web sites makes me think the Epicurean Affair might be more of an industry event than one for tourists, but I have no hard evidence for this. In any case, I had never attended before, so I altered my vacation plans by a few days, and managed to be in town when it was held.

Don't Promise What You Can't Deliver
The Nevada Hotel & Lodging Association, and the Nevada Restaurant Association were the big names advertising the event (along with the Flamingo Hotel, of course). Here's what was promised on their web sites, right up to the day of the event:
"With over 100 of Las Vegas’ finest bars and restaurants represented..."
As the participant list, below, shows, there were nowhere near that many restaurants and bars - it was more like 60 - and calling them the finest is an insult to the majority of top spots in town, which did not participate.

The Food
I'm sorry, but I barely have anything to say about the food. It was eminently forgettable. There was nothing wrong with it, but there wasn't anything that made me say "wow," or even "I have to remember that item." Mostly I was wondering why I was wasting my time and money here.

Cost: $100.

This event left a bad taste in my mouth. Overblown promises are forgivable if the food is great. The food wasn't great. If I'm right that this is more of an industry event than anything else, then that explains things...a little. If your reason is to socialize with fellow workers, then by all means go. If you're looking for a good food experience, pass it by and go to Vegas Uncork'd instead.

Index of Restaurants