By Vegas Food Nerd
This tiny gem of a place has been around Las Vegas for over 39 years. With the recent closure of the iconic Riviera Hotel & Casino, one thing is very evident if you live in this town: Old gets torn down and the new gets more and more attention from the tourists. That’s why, when we walked into this restaurant, we were swept up in its time warp trip back to the days when Frank and the boys walked around our town like they owned the place—a time most of us who live here now wish we could have experienced. Pamplemousse is small, quiet, and quaint, decorated just as if my French grandmother herself had picked out the décor herself. Our waiter doubled as our host for the evening and sat us in a cute booth where we were able to sit side by side, which made for a romantic twist for the night. Classic French bistro fare is what they serve here and the setting for it is perfect.
Our waiter was a bit on the quirky side, which made for an awkward start to our meal. We quickly laughed it off—after all, if there is one thing I’ve learned about this city is that it does indeed run rampant with quirky characters. After we’d placed our order, a complimentary basket filled with fresh and crunchy crudités to enjoy came with a house made vinaigrette. This was a pleasant touch that set them apart from other restaurants here. Next up was our appetizer called Les Fettuccini “Ala Georges”, which came to us with a great story. The dish came to be one night when Frank Sinatra was dining at the restaurant. He told the owner, George, to make him some pasta like he liked. The chef whipped up a cream sauce with herbs and Swiss cheese to please him, and it’s been on the menu ever since. This was a very good dish. We then sampled a puff pastry appetizer that was filled with shrimp, scallops, mushrooms, and a lobster bisque safranée sauce. It was a crispy, creamy, briny delight that we finished off quickly. To end our meal we tried the Chicken Cordon Bleu that was on special—not our favorite of the night—was hoping for a bit more flavor in this one. Unfortunately, we were on a time crunch and were unable to order a dessert, but it does give us a reason to go back.
In a time where new reigns supreme over all, I loved the old time classic feel to this restaurant. It’s almost refreshing, actually, to experience a place that has stood the test of time and vibrates with the ghosts of the vintage Las Vegas that we all still celebrate and long for. If you are looking for a piece of that era, I highly suggest that you give this place a try.
Let’s face it—the world is now full of self-proclaimed foodies. And to be a proper foodie, you need to find foods that other mere mortals have yet to hear of: Indy chef finds that will stupefy your friends as to how you discovered such a thing. Mouth.com looks for small artisanal food creators that source their fun treats and snacks locally with a unique twist on their products. Choose from a monthly delivery of their latest finds or opt to order them individually. The choice is yours. Either way, you will enjoy their twists on wine, beer, liquors, snacks, and every kind of pickle that you can imagine. Go ahead and bring a jar of pickled watermelon to your next foodie gathering and it is sure to get some attention or at least start a few conversations about food, which in my opinion, is always worth talking about.
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