Hawthorn Grill is located inside the J.W. Marriott in Summerlin. The hotel is attached to Rampart Casino through a hallway but technically the buildings are separate. This is a relatively new high-end steakhouse that opened earlier this year.
The restaurant prices are appropriate for fine dining in the area. It’s expensive but not out of line. However, the food and drinks on the bar menu (select bar & lounge) are 50% off for Happy Hour.
The burger was a perfectly cooked medium. It was juicy and flavorful. The fries were surprisingly good although I wouldn’t add the mojito sauce next time. Overall, this meal is probably worth $15.
Forget that, the burger and fries were only $7.50. That wasn’t even the best part of Happy Hour at Hawthorn Grill.
I seriously might use Uber or Lyft the next time I visit Hawthorn Grill. Many of their signature cocktails and beer are 50% off. Paying $3-$4 for a Fat Tire or Stone Pale Ale is good but 50% off a $13 Chimay is a great deal. I love beer from Belgium and this Trappist Ale was perfect on a hot day.
$10 for a Happy Hour dinner of a beer, burger, and fries is an excellent deal. Being able to upgrade the experience with a Chimay for a few more bucks is great. I’ll definitely be back and odds are good that I’ll be drinking a few beers this time.
I finally made it to Yardbird at The Venetian last night! This has been on top of my to-do list for a while. The restaurant has been receiving rave reviews from people who I trust since it first opened. I just haven’t been to The Venetian much this year.
I used to visit The Venetian a couple times a week when I first moved to Las Vegas but not so much in the past year. It used to be home to fast free wifi on the Vegas Strip but now just about every casino has wifi so there isn’t a need to visit as often.
I learned a couple of weeks ago that Yardbird would be celebrating National Bourbon Heritage Month with a special flight of bourbon. That this was the excuse I needed to finally visit Yardbird. The tasting is $25 for four different one-ounce pours. The flight consists of the following:
Bacon Bourbon – Wild Turkey 81
Honey orange – Woodford Reserve
Apple Spice – Knob Creek Small Batch
Salted Maple – Maker’s Mark
The bourbons are listed in the order served in the photo above from right to left. I’m by no means a connoisseur of bourbon so this won’t be a spot on opinion. Here are my thoughts on each:
Bacon Bourbon – Wild Turkey 81 – Bacon booze (wine, whiskey, bourbon) doesn’t actually taste like bacon. There’s usually a smokiness to the booze. The bourbon is light and not overpowered by any flavor. This was very easy to drink. It was a good way to ease into the more flavorful bourbons.
Honey orange – Woodford Reserve –This was aromatically insane. There is a heavy orange scent to this bourbon. Once I moved past the aroma, this was my favorite of the batch. This is easy to drink and it felt and tasted like bourbon with more than a hint of orange.
Apple Spice – Knob Creek Small Batch –My thoughts going in were that this sounds like something for sick people. This was my least favorite because I don’t really like apple spice. However, my opinion changed when I added the shot to the leftover ice from my Old Fashioned. The ice lessened the apple spice attack and it was nice.
Salted Maple – Maker’s Mark – This was so damn sweet that I didn’t know what to make of it at first. However, the maple was interesting and I came around to enjoy it later in the evening. It took a while before realizing that my mouth needed to drink this without apple, orange or any other flavor to appreciate it.
Overall, I enjoyed the tasting. The $25 tasting price is in line with the prices you’d expect to pay at The Venetian. I’ll get into the meal that accompanied the meal later but I want to get my thoughts on the bourbon tasting since it’s only available for the month.
Since I was tasting bourbon I wanted to extend that to one of their signature cocktails. Looking at the bar menus I settled on an old reliable. The Old Fashioned is always a safe bet and it was delicious. It was so good that I had one for dessert too.
The term handcrafted is thrown around often nowadays but it’s legitimate at Yardbird. They carve the ice at the bar every day. They make many of the ingredients for their drinks fresh at the restaurant. This is what you expect when you’re paying top of the market prices for cocktails.
G2E is just a few weeks away and I expect to see another visit or two in my future. The booze at Yardbird was good, but the food was great. Stay tuned.
I can’t say that I would be very excited to see Fat Axl and his Guns N Roses cover band at the Hard Rock but I think I’d like one of their drinks. Culinary Dropout debuted these three specialty cocktails to coincide with the latest GnR residency at the Hard Rock.
Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door – Angel’s Envy “Headmaster’s Private Reserve” Bourbon, Grand Marnier, Apricot Sour
Welcome To The Jungle – Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, Pineapple, Lime, Red Strip Jamaican Lager
Since I enjoy bourbon and Grand Marnier I think Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door would be my favorite of these drinks. Each drink is $12 which is on the higher end of the price range that you should expect for this kind of cocktail at the Hard Rock. These drinks would probably cost about $10 at Hard Rock if not for the Guns N Roses name.
Seeing a 50-year-old man sing songs written by a 20-year-old rarely works out. Download or buy the CD of “Appetite For Destruction” and hear how Guns N Roses songs were meant to be heard.