The three-day “Life is Beautiful” festival concluded on Sunday 18th September, the first event since then rolling rock I got the majority share At the festival it featured remarkably thinner art and music, and local chefs and restaurants made for a bright spot in downtown Las Vegas’ culinary offerings.
“If you look at our group, you will find that the majority of our culinary vendors are locals,” says Shari Macy, the festival’s food and beverage director. “We have a great local community and great chefs and restaurants – and we’ll show that at Life is Beautiful.” There was plenty to eat at the festival’s culinary villages, with highlights including the fire-grilled meals at Cookout, the many caviar-infused dishes at Omakase Cantina’s dinners, and the array of flavors coming out of the pizzas by about a dozen Las Vegas pizza chefs. Here are some of the best meals from the weekend.
La Striga Things by Gina Marinelli from La Striga and Harlow
Chef Gina Marinelli Weird things– Sunday’s prize-themed dinner was equal parts fun and thoughtful; The one-hour session opened with an Eggo pancake — a nod to the TV show — with fresh cream sauce and caviar. Made on a TV dinner tray alongside wagyu striploin, bone marrow potato croquettes, and a play on Cosmic Brownie, the real star of the ’80s dinner was spaghetti. Handcrafted squid ink noodles were tossed with crab meat marinated in shrimp oil, Parmesan and basil – all topped with tiny pearls of wasabi tobiko. The dish is visually beautifully crafted – deep black noodles and juicy white crab contrast with the neon green of the sheer wasabi pearls. She made a delicious morsel of pasta that was at once salty, spicy, and satisfying.
Carnitas Taco from Poblano China by Jose Andres
Regarded as one of the festival’s best deals, Cookout offered open meals by top local chefs for $15 each. Among them: the carnitas taco from China poblano with three tacos, salsa, and chips. The corn tortilla was stuffed with smoked lean pork and stuffed with cilantro and onions. Even the chips had a liberal seasoning of the chili pepper mix. Dip every bite of carnitas tacos in a spicy tomatillo salsa and creamy avocado salsa for the perfect lunch while sitting in the shade listening to performers at the nearby Huntridge Theatre. It’s hard to beat a Jose Andres original at this price.
Yukon from Yukon Pizza
Another restaurant in the pop-up circuit, Yukon Pizza showed up at the Pizzeria cooking zone on Sunday to make Yukon, a Margherita pizza using 125-year-old sourdough garnish, a tomato sauce with just the right amount of sweetness, garlic confit, Parmesan cheese, and an array of Great mozzarella cheese. The crust on this four-slice pizza was delicious—thin and crunchy, slightly charred from the hot oven, and slightly sour, paired harmoniously with the garlic pizza toppings.
Chicken Pad Thai from Night + Market
Night + Market from Virgin Hotels Las Vegas showed up at Life is Beautiful to serve up downtown Thai street food. When the temperature cools off after dark, nothing can cool off quite like the warm, chewy noodles in a Thai chicken dish. With eggs, sweet radishes, and crunchy peanuts—and a sauce using fish sauce, vinegar, and sugar—the end product is salty, sour, and sweet. Tightly packed takeaway containers come with a cup of red pepper flakes for those who want to add a little more heat.
Black Pearl Tuna Ceviche Tostada
The connoisseurs of the Las Vegas ceviche at Black Pearl served generous servings of seafood platters all weekend, and one of them was the tuna ceviche tostada. Chefs Daniel Arias and Isidro Marques serve up scoops of the stuff at local pop-ups, and iteration of Life is Beautiful combines ahi tuna with crunchy cucumber, red onion, cilantro, black garlic, and cayenne pepper cassava sauce. . It all comes on a tostada slice perfect for slicing and simmering peppers. even better? Although the portion was large, it didn’t risk making anyone feel full before a night of dancing.
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