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November 01, 2001
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IT DOESN’T TAKE A ROAD FOOD WARRIOR OR A DINING DETECTIVE TO DIVINE THAT LAS VEGANS ARE DRINKING BETTER THAN EVER THESE DAYS. WHETHER IT’S A GIFT OR A BOTTLE OR A CASE OF SOME CLASSIFIED RARITY, THE OUTLETS FOR WINE BUYING ARE EVERYWHERE AND GETTING BETTER ALL THE TIME. BEING AN OLD TIMER AS I AM…WHICH IN VEGAS MEANS YOU WERE HERE BEFORE 1990, I REMEMBER WHEN IT WAS MR. LEE’S OR THE GROCERY BIN WHENEVER WE SOUGHT THE FRUIT OF THE VINE. LEE’S STILL HAS THE BROADEST SELECTION IN TOWN, BUT FOR MY MONEY IT IS THE LOCAL WINE SHOPS THAT HAVE REALLY MADE A DIFFERENCE AND BROUGHT THE GOOD STUFF TO THE NEIGHBORHOODS. TO THE EAST IS THE LAS VEGAS WINE COMPANY …..WHICH NOW HAS AN OUTLET NEAR GREEN VALLEY. STARTED BY DOMINIC BORRA__SIX_____YEARS AGO, THIS STORE ON EAST DESERT INN, PROVED THAT A LOCAL PURVEYOR OF WORLDLY WINES COULD MAKE A GO OF IT DESPITE THE EVILS OF MONOPOLISTIC WHOLESALING, CASINO INDIFFERENCE, AND SUPERMARKET PRICE SLASHING. YES THERE WAS A MARKET HERE FOR BETTER THAN AVERAGE WINES… GOOD JUICE FROM THE BEST PRODUCERS THAT PEOPLE WANTED TO TRY, BUT FOR YEARS NO ONE IN VEGAS WANTED TO GIVE THEM A CHANCE. NOW WINE DRINKERS ALSO HAVE MARCHE BACCHUS IN DESERT SHORES AND NEVADA WINE CELLARS OUT WEST-- BOTH CHOCK FULL OF FRENCH AND CALIFORNIA BEAUTIES EVERY NIGHT….…AND THE WINE SELECTIONS AREN’T BAD EITHER. ALL THREE OF THESE STUNNING SHOPS HAVE MADE GOOD DRINKING ACCESSIBLE WITHOUT A TRIP TO THE STRIP. BUT THOSE OF YOU WHO DON’T MIND MIGHT JUST WANT TO CHECK OUT LAS VEGAS ODYSSEY TWO THOUSAND ONE WHERE, BEGINNIING NOV FIFTEENTH, A FOOD AND WINE EXTRAVAGANZA WILL BEGIN WITH EVERYTHING FROM PICASSO COOKING DEMONSTRATIONS TO CULT WINE TASTINGS. THE FOUR SEPARATE TASTINGS, OVERSEEN BY MASTER SOMMELIER BARRY LARVIN, ARE EASILY THE MOST SOPHISTICATED OF THEIR KIND THAT ARE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC AND A TASTEFUL WAY TO DETERMINE IF THAT CALIFORNIA CAB IS WORTH A HUNDRED BUCKS. HERE’S A HINT: IT’S NOT BUT THE FOOD AND WINE YOU WILL TASTE AT LAS VEGAS ODDYSSEY DEFINITELY WILL BE.

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Archives

Nov 24, 2010 | Thanksgiving 2010 - Another Beanie Reveal
John Curtas delves into family history to discover the real story behind Grandma Schroader's Sour Beans.

Nov 19, 2009 | Valentino -- You don't know the truffles I've seen
According to Food Critic John Curtas, no other Italian restaurant in Las Vegas has performed at such a high level for so long.

Oct 1, 2009 | Blow It Up
In at least one part of town, our dining critic John Curtas says the food used to be a lot better.

Sep 25, 2009 | Social Media Meltdown
For our dining critic, John Curtas, social media has started to intrude on dining out.

Sep 2, 2009 | Discovering LOS ANTOJOS
Our dining critic John Curtas finds a new affordable favorite.

Aug 20, 2009 | Chinois R.I.P.
For John Curtas the recent closing of Wolfgang Puck's first Las Vegas restaurant brings back memories.

Aug 3, 2009 | Food, Inc.
John Curtas turns movie reviewer today - but the subject is in his usual area of expertise. Hear his review of "Food, Inc."

Jul 16, 2009 | The Steak That Saved Las Vegas
Dining critic John Curtas finds some steak aged for EIGHT MONTHS and he tells us how it tastes.

Jul 2, 2009 | Bang for Your Buck
Everyone's food budget is tighter these days. But if you still want to dine out now and then, our dining critic John Curtas has a few tips on restaurants now giving you more bang for your buck.

Jun 19, 2009 | Whassup with Wazuzu
Explore Dining Critic John Curtas' love/hate relationship with Wazuzu. If you want to spice up your dinner go for at least a "4 or 5."

Jun 12, 2009 | Two Farmer's Markets
Fresh, locally produced food has become a big trend across the U.S. Our food critic, John Curtas, says there's more of this trend in Las Vegas than you might think.

Jun 4, 2009 | MandM Soul Food
John Curtas tells us about one of his favorite dining spots - a surpsingly affordable one.

May 28, 2009 | Checkpoint Charlie
While fine dining has seen a downturn in Las Vegas in recent months, our dining critic John Curtas says at least one dining legend intends to stay put. Charlie Trotter is standing pat in Las Vegas. John Curtas reviews Resturant Charlie.

May 8, 2009 | Food Festival Frenzy!
It's a time of many food festivals in Las Vegas. John Curtas has an overview.

May 5, 2009 | Peppermill Coffee Shop and Fireside Lounge
A landmark Las Vegas restaurant gets a visit from John Curtas. He takes you to the Peppermill.

Apr 23, 2009 | Thai Me Up Thai Me Down
Thai cuisine is starting to show up in more places in Las Vegas. John Curtas has some recommendations

Apr 9, 2009 | A Gourmet Corner - In Spring Valley?
Food Critic John Curtas takes a trip to the strangest gourmet corner in town.

Apr 2, 2009 | Pip's is a Pip
If you're looking for good dining near Aliante, our dining critic, John Curtas, has found a new place to go.

Mar 26, 2009 | Stripped to Its Bare Essentials
Dining on steak at Planet Hollywood! John Curtas takes you along.

Mar 19, 2009 | Hachi is absolutely amazing!
John Curtas has a find - a Japanese-fusion restaurant on the west edge of the city.

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