Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Tucked away inside the Palazzo on the Las Vegas Strip is Chef Mario Batali's Carnevino. There are just so many steakhouses to choose from in this town, so how is one to decide? After a long debate, I decided that the one day adventure with Burumun should include Carnevino. Booking a reservation online and finding parking was easy. It was 9PM on Monday night and they seemed moderately busy. The evening did not start off on a high note because we had to wait a while at the bar while for our table. Considering that it's late and a Monday night, I found that a little off-putting when there's a few empty tables.
Luckily I found some entertainment by taking pictures of the bull and by the bull. This huge statue reminds me of the ones they have in San Fermin for the Running of the Bulls. They have a nice bar area with a few tables on the side.
For bread they served a Rosemary Ciabatta accompanied with Lardo (Pork) with Rosemary and Butter. Did I hear it correctly? Lardo as a bread spread? **ding ding ding!!!** Jackpot!
After a little debate, Burumun and I decided to share a pasta as an appetizer/side. We agreed upon the Black Fettucine ($21) with Crab, Jalapeños, and Shallots. If you would like the full-size it is another $15, in all honesty I'd rather get a steak for about the same price. Nonetheless, the pasta was al dente and light.
Burumun chose to try the Scaloppine Veal with Porcini and a Marsala sauce, $32. Their veal is free range and organic from Marshal Farms in Pennsylvania. They are rubbed with a special blend of sea salt, thyme, and porcini powder. A traditional Italian dish where the thinly sliced meat is dredged in wheat flour and sautéed with a wine sauce. The portion was very generous and filling.
Carne is meat and Vino is wine. I debated on what to order but in the end I had to stick with steak. This is after all a steakhouse. Their house specialties were all portioned for 2 people and Burumun had her heart set on veal. =*( What is a steak lover like me to do when the cut she wants is not for a single person? I had to succumb and order the Bone-In New York Strip, $54. They serve all natural BBL beef that's aged and hand selected by Adam Perry Lang. BBL beef is hormone and antibiotic free. Each steak is rubbed with sea salt, black pepper, and rosemary then charred. I'll admit that I had my doubts especially after the steak came out charred. It's a blasphemy for my steak to be over-cooked and I specifically asked for a medium-rare to rare steak. Don't fret the charred exterior held within it a nicely marbleized cut of beef that was tender and flavorful! Whatever that rub is I want! Even though I wasn't able to enjoy their rib-eye, the NY steak was beautifully marbleized and almost tasted like a rib-eye. The meat by itself is so tasty and sensual. I'm drooling just thinking about that luscious piece of meat!
It's hard for me to admit but I should never had ordered the Black Truffle Vinaigrette Sauce, $5. I never thought I'd say this... but who needs that truffle vinaigrette! The meat was so nicely seasoned and succulent that no sauce was needed! Of course the truffle taste emanated in each bite, but that only masked the splendid natural flavor of the beef and rub. I sat there baffled at what to do... it was like Sophie's Choice... to eat with sauce or not... and especially after paying $5 for it. **sigh** This will be one of the RARE times I will say this... Do NOT get the black truffle sauce. **it hurts me to even type these words** Rely on the natural flavor of the meat to guide you to the Elysian fields. There weren't real truffles in the sauce. I believe they were porcini mushrooms drenched in a black truffle oil vinaigrette, which is still good.
All in all it was a very enjoyable meal. We had a rocky start but the food surely made up for it. I didn't expect much and the expectations were even lower after the wait, but they came back fighting and won me over. After all, we were sort of celebrating my b-day and it was our little getaway. =D
3325 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109