Sunday, April 28, 2013

Holstein's Shakes and Buns (Las Vegas)

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas...unless you bring home a few extra pounds and a slightly squishier mid-section.

Earlier this month, my boyfriend and I spent a weekend in Las Vegas to celebrate our anniversary (our fifth, for anyone interested). We much prefer sitting on our couch to being in da club but tailored our weekend itinerary to our food-centric tastes, opting to forgo usual Sin City trappings. We may not be partiers, but we are certainly eaters. 

For our inaugural vacation meal, we visited Holstein's Shakes and Buns at The Cosmopolitan.

Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Bursting with graffiti and cheeky cartoon cows, Holstein's perfectly complements the Cosmopolitan's playful vibe. The restaurant sits near the Marquee Nightclub, the Cosmo's big moneymaker (and subject of this simultaneously amusing and appalling GQ article), which makes for sublime people-watching (OK, judging).

Popcorn at Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Our meal began with a pail of complimentary popcorn. Our server described it as salt and vinegar popcorn, but the freshly popped kernels tasted decidedly like lime to us. Either way, we enjoyed munching on it while we waited for our dinner.

Truffle Lobster Mac and Cheese at Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

The Truffle Lobster Mac n' Cheese ($16.50) seemed like a no-brainer but was ultimately underwhelming. With pasta firmer than al dente, a wimpy amount of lobster, and a taleggio-mascarpone sauce that fell short of our creamy and cheesy expectations, this dish left us reaching for more of the popcorn.

Gold Standard with Egg at Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Holstein's offers sixteen unique "Big Buns" options, running the gamut from a vegan burger to a decadent foie-gras topped one.

For my entree, I ordered the Gold Standard ($17.50), a dry-aged sirloin burger topped with smoked bacon, aged goat cheddar cheese, tomato confit, baby arugula and garlic-chive aioli and added a fried egg for $1.00. The burger combined classic flavors with elevated fixings, and the fried egg added both a richness and textural element. This hit the spot. 

Nom Nom Burger at Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)

Justin fared less well with his Nom Nom Burger ($16.50), a combination of a Kobe beef patty, cheddar cheese, potato chips and Thousand Island dressing. In theory, the burger is a funky hybrid of high and low class, but, in practice, the flavors were rather one-note, and the patty overcooked. 

Tiramisu Milkshake at Holstein's (Las Vegas, NV)
For dessert, we split a "Bam-Boozled" Tiramisu Shake-- emphasis on "booze." The shake featured blended mascarpone ice cream, ladyfinger crumbs, and Patron XO Cafe Dark as well as whipped cream, cocoa powder and espresso bean toppings. The milkshake was perfectly enjoyable but ultimately unremarkable. 

At the end of our meal at Holstein's, Justin and I were happy to have food in our bellies after a long drive and pleased to check it off our list but considered it a warm-up for better eats to come.

*FYI: Check in on FourSquare to receive a free beer. You know, in case you've struck out at the casino downstairs. 

Holstein's Shakes and Buns
The Cosmopolitan Hotel, Level 2
3708 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 698-7940
Holstein's on Urbanspoon

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