Benjie and twin brother Mark sprung for the hottest restaurant in town, Guy Savoy (It’s spelled “Guy Savoy,” but it’s pronounced “luxury yacht.) for dinner last night, along with their buddy Nick. I give it mixed reviews. The food itself was superb and the room comfortable. The service, however, was just plain old Vegas-inconsistent. Immediately on being seated, a farm-fresh blonde server offered us a variety of Champagnes by the glass. We decided to look at the menu first but waited several minutes before they were offered. When they came, no amount of preparation could eliminate the sticker shock. The appetizers started in the $40 range and the main courses were around $75 or more. I settled on a $68 bowl of soup made from artichokes and black truffles. It was truly sublime. For the main course I had a pan-roasted mix of three game birds. It was interesting but didn’t blow me away.
At the boys’ request, I ordered the wine, a nice Montrachet to start and then the 1989 Pichon-Longueville Comtesse, one of my favorite second-tier Bordeaux. The friendly sommelier, who remembered me from Craftsteak, decanted the Pichon and when I tasted it I put on my best poker face and said, “You guys wouldn’t like this.” Unfortunately my bluff got called and the wine was gone all too quickly.
During the appetizer a poised redhead planted herself at the tiny bar outside the restaurant and began chattering nonstop at the bartender, all the while glancing and smiling in our direction every minute or two. We were wondering what her deal was. I ventured, “She is probably no innocent to the pleasures of the flesh.” Nick, in his southern drawl, said, “You’re a pretty savvy guy.” So to satisfy my curiosity I got up and moseyed over to the bar, eyeing the racks full of empty Champagne glasses at the back and waiting for a break in her monologue. It never happened, so I returned to the table.
As a rule I don’t eat dessert but they had a cheese cart so I ordered a selection of sheep’s-milk cheeses, my favorite, along with a Jacobo Poli grappa. Nick asked, “Would I like that?” “No,” I said. “I’ll have one o’ them too,” Nick said, obviously giving me no respect after my comment on the Pichon. It was fun watching him screw up his face while drinking it, whooping it up and shouting, “It goes down real smooth, like paint thinner.” The couple at the next table, who were likely celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary with a $1500 meal, raised horrified eyebrows in our direction. “You’ll have to forgive my friend,” I said. “He’s just off the boat from Alamaba.” Then a debate ensued about whether it was physically possible to sail from Alamaba to Las Vegas, or at least to Lake Mead. I decided not to bet against it.
On the way out Nick, who has the skin of an elephant and balls the size of Alabama, successfully chatted up the redhead and got her name. “Did you get her web site?” I asked, about to warn him about the rash of phony Myspace addresses going around. “Nope,” he reported proudly, “But I gave her my number!” That never works for me. He must be a savvy guy.