#LauraLoves NYC Post #1

Ellen's Stardust Diner NYC
The famous Ellen’s StarDust Diner! Lots of future Broadway stars have started off as servers here!
Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Fluffy chocolate chip pancakes from Ellen’s Stardust Diner! This was on the first day, right after stepping off the Megabus and checked into the hotel.
Radio City Music Hall
Radio City Music Hall
TCM Classic Film Tour
TCM Classic Film Tour, on day two of my NYC vacation!
Queensboro Bridge
The Queensboro Bridge
Holly Golightly's stoop from Breakfast at Tiffany's
Holly Golightly‘s stoop in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (Upper East Side)
Buddhakon bar Sex & The City Tour
Buddhakan– the bar area, which was one of the scenes for Carrie & Big’s engagement party in the first Sex & The City movie.
Rehearsal Dinner room Buddhakan Sex & The City Tour
The room at Buddhakan where Carrie & Big celebrated their rehearsal dinner in the first Sex & The City movie
O'Neills Scout Sex & The City Tour
Free Cosmopolitan (served by a very hot bartender) from O’Neills (the bar “Scout” that Steve & Aidan owned on Sex & The City)!
O'Neill's New York City
Second view of my strong, but tasty Cosmopolitan from O’Neills in New York City!
Carrie Bradshaw's stoop Sex & The City Tour
Carrie Bradshaw’s legendary stoop (which is actually in Greenwich Village, not the Upper East Side)
Italian Soda Lombardi's New York City
Italian Soda from Lombardi’s (the first pizzeria in America)
Lombardi's Pizza
The best pizza I’ve ever had in my entire life was from Lombardi’s Pizza in New York City!

Stay tuned for #LauraLovesNYC Post #2: my review of Crif Dogs in the East Village!

Cheers to food & fitness,

-Friendly Fitness Foodie

You can book both the TCM Classic Film Tour and the Sex and the City Hotspots Tour at www.onlocationtours.com!


Last Vegas post: Noodles at the Bellagio

*DISCLAIMER* I do not seek monetary benefits from neither Noodles nor the Bellagio Casino & Resort. I am just a foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Picture was captured with an iPhone 5s and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4.

*Website link below this post!*

The very last night in Las Vegas, my Mom and I decided to dine at Noodles, located inside the Bellagio Casino & Resort. Since we stayed at the Monte Carlo Resort & Casino, we utilized the tram to get to the Bellagio (convenient, right?). I’ve heard lots of great things about Noodles (can’t remember where I heard it, though lol). The restaurant has a very unique decor- there are noodles on the walls and even in glass jars all around the restaurant! The vibe is definitely an asian vibe. I really loved hearing all of the different dialects that the chefs, waiters, waitresses, hosts and hostesses were speaking.

There were so many tasty choices on the menu, but I finally decided on one dish for dinner:

Pad Thai BBQ Pork
Pad Thai BBQ Pork from Noodles at the Bellagio

I decided on Pad Thai BBQ Pork! I’ve never visited a restaurant that offered BBQ Pork as a meat option for Pad Thai! Let me tell you: these were THE BEST noodles I’ve ever had! Also, the best pork and best bbq sauce EVER! What a clever idea to pair BBQ Pork with Pad Thai- Bourdain would be all over this dish! 🙂 This was seriously the best Pad Thai I’ve ever had in my entire LIFE! In my opinion, I would only discover better Pad Thai if I actually flew to Thailand.

Well there you have it folks: a simple review of a not-so-simple dish! I loved Noodles contemporary take on Pad Thai. If you’re ever in Vegas, I recommend dining at Noodles (I’ve heard that their Dim Sum is also very good! It’s only offered on certain days, though).

Three Cheers to good food, fabulous art and cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Noodles at the Bellagio’s website

Mario Batali’s Otto Las Vegas

Chocolate, Vanilla Bean & Salted Caramel Gelati from Otto Las Vegas

*DISCLAIMER*: I do not seek monetary benefits from neither Mario Batali nor Otto. I am just a foodie, who enjoys sharing my foodie adventures. Pictures were captured with my iPhone 5s and edited with Instagram and Adobe Photoshop Extended CS4.

*Social Media and website links below this post!*

The second night in Vegas, my Mom and I dined at Mario Batali’s Otto, located inside The Venetian Resort & Casino. Before I left for my Las Vegas trip, I viewed LOTS of famous chef’s website to see who’s restaurants fascinated me the most. I must say, Otto was one of them! Otto is an Italian food mecca: lots of pasta dishes, pizza, wine (all from Italy) and of course, gelati!

Pictured above was my dessert from my meal: dark chocolate, vanilla bean & salted caramel gelati! All of the flavors were tasty, but the dark chocolate was my favorite. 🙂

Both the restaurant’s design and the inside of the Venetian shopping promenade was so idyllic! Even though I’ve never been in Italy, just being at both Otto and the Venetian made me FEEL as if I was in Italy.

So far- good atmosphere & good gelati! 🙂 The maitre’d was INCREDIBLE (and so cute- I swear, he was a Prince Harry look-a-like!); he was very knowledgeable of all of the food and the wine. Very friendly and very attentive to our table (more so than our lackluster waiter).

Pancetta and Goat Cheese Pizza
Pancetta and Goat Cheese Pizza from Otto Las Vegas

Moving on to my dinner: pancetta and goat cheese pizza! This pizza was absolutely MIND-BLOWING! Almost as good as II Pizzaiolo in Pittsburgh (almost). You can’t go wrong with pancetta, goat cheese, good tomato sauce and a good crust! I was a very happy dinner! Also, I wish you all had “smell-o-vision” (as Emeril would say), cuz this dish smelled INCREDIBLE!

If you’re looking for a leisurely & special dinner in Vegas, I recommend Mario Batali’s Otto!

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art & cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Otto’s Las Vegas website

Otto Las Vegas’ Facebook page

Mario Batali’s Twitter page

The Legendary Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge

Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge
Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge in Las Vegas

*DISCLAIMER* I do not seek monetary benefits from the Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge. I’m just a foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Pictures were captured with an iPhone 5s and edited with both Instagram & Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended.

*Website and social media links below this post*

The Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge. It’s been a Vegas treasure for over 42 years; it’s been featured in such films as Casino and Showgirls. More important (well, at least to me), Anthony Bourdain dined there on his Las Vegas episode of No Reservations. Ever since that episode, I knew that if I visited Las Vegas someday, I had to go to the Peppermill.

The Peppermill sign
Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge sign
Inside of The Peppermill
Inside of The Peppermill

When you walk inside The Peppermill, it takes you back to a different time (1950s and ’60s diner time). Then, you have this Japanese-looking trees surrounding the booths. Somehow, in Vegas, this combination works. Everyone from the hostess to the server’s assistant to the server is amicable.

If a diner offers breakfast, you order breakfast. 🙂 Here’s what I ordered:

French Toast Ambrosia
French Toast Ambrosia from The Peppermill

French Toast Ambrosia: my epic breakfast! Pair that with coffee and lots of syrup and whip cream, and you can’t go wrong! The french toast was mouth-watering (when can you go wrong with french toast) and I did like some of the fruit, too. 🙂

If I wouldn’t have ordered such a massive breakfast, I would’ve ordered dessert, too. They have this dessert called “The Elegant Brownie” that’s supposed to be INCREDIBLE!

Well, there you go, folks. There’s my impression of the lovely Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge.

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art & cultural events,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge website

Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge’s Facebook page

Peppermill Restaurant & Fireside Lounge’s Twitter page

Breakfast at Bouchon Bistro in Las Vegas

Bouchon Bistro Las Vegas

*DISCLAIMER* I do not seek monetary benefits from neither Thomas Keller nor Bouchon Bistro. I’m just a foodie, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures. Pictures were captured with an iPhone 5s and photos were edited in Instagram and Adobe Photoshop CS4 extended.

*Website and social media links are below this post!*

Day two of my epic Las Vegas trip: Breakfast at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bistro, located in the luxurious Venetian Resort & Casino on the Las Vegas strip. Never in my wildest dreams did I image I would be dining at Bouchon. I know for sure I will (probably) never have the chance to dine at The French Laundry (I heard it’s very expensive and it’s apparently difficult to make a reservation). Anywho: I learned that there was Bouchon location in Las Vegas. After I browsed through the brunch, breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, my Mom and I decided on venturing over to Bouchon Bistro for breakfast.

Chocolate Almond Croissant
Chocolate Almond Croissant from Bouchon Bistro in Las Vegas

Dish #1 (which my Mom and I shared): Chocolate almond croissant. This was a VERY good croissant, but not as good as the croissants that Pittsburgh’s own La Gourmandine bakery makes.

Granola, yogurt and fruit parfait
House made Granola with vanilla yogurt and fruit compote

If you’re going to have a parfait, you may as well order one from Bouchon! This was INCREDIBLE! Some of the best granola and yogurt I’ve ever had! House made granola, homemade vanilla yogurt with fruit compote. Floating on a cloud of happiness!

Granola & yogurt parfait
Close up of the house made granola with vanilla yogurt & berry compote
Cinnamon Beignets du Jour at Bouchon Bistro in Las Vegas

I hit my first time consuming beignets right ‘atta the park! These little beignets were the best pastries I’ve EVER had! 😀 Nice and light with the right amount of crunch! Plus, the dipping sauces (a nutella-like dip and house made jam) really made this dish special.

Next time you’re in Las Vegas, I HIGHLY recommend stopping by Bouchon Bistro in the Venetian for either brunch, breakfast, lunch or dinner. Yes, it will be a little more money (well, breakfast was moderately priced, but I’m not sure how much dinner runs), but it’s totally worth it! Traditional French cuisine, prepared with love, right in the heart of the Las Vegas strip! This place is a foodie’s delight!

Three cheers to good food, fabulous art & cultural events!

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

Bouchon Bistro Las Vegas’ website

Bouchon Bistro’s Facebook page

Bouchon Bistro Las Vegas’ Twitter page

The Sights of Las Vegas

The View of New York, New York and Excalibur from Monte Carlo Resort & Casino
The View of New York, New York and Excalibur from Monte Carlo Resort & Casino

*DISCLAIMER* I do not claim monetary benefits from any of these Las Vegas businesses. I’m just a Pittsburgh lady, who loves to document her foodie, art, theater and cultural adventures! 🙂 Photos were taken with an iPhone 5s and edited utilizing Instagram and Adobe Photoshop Extended CS4.

As a few of you know, I recently traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada on a four-day vacation. Before I post about my foodie adventures, here are some tourist-y photos:

Paris in Las Vegas
Paris in Las Vegas!
Paris Casino & Resort in Las Vegas
Paris Casino & Resort in Las Vegas
Las Vegas showgirls
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas
Bellagio Casino & Resort
“Does it say Bellagio?”
The Forum Shops at Caesar's Palace
The Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace
Peppermill in Las Vegas
Peppermill Fireside Lounge
Peppermill in Las Vegas
The legendary Peppermill in Las Vegas
Bellagio ceiling
Ceiling in the lobby of the Bellagio
Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Garden
Conservatory & Botanical Garden at the Bellagio
Conservatory & Botanical Garden at the Bellagio
Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Garden
New York, New York in Las Vegas
New York, New York (in Las Vegas)!

Three Cheers to good food, fabulous art & cultural travels,

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie