You may not be aware of the Bellagio’s Tuscany Kitchen. It’s not a restaurant, but it is the home of some of the most amazing meals to ever hit the Strip. It’s referred to as the Epicurean Epicenter, where special dining events such as wine dinners featuring Bellagio chefs and sommeliers—or visiting culinary artists—are a frequent occurrence. Recently, chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten (of Prime and Jean-Georges Steakhouse) teamed up with film director and winemaker Francis Ford Coppola for a special event. (You can check out upcoming Epicurean Epicenter events at Bellagio’s website.)
On February 14-16, the Tuscany Kitchen will host one of its most rare events. For only the second time, the prestigious Diaoyutai State Guesthouse of Beijing will visit the United States to present a once-in-a-lifetime, three-day dining experience. The state guest house was founded during the Jin Dynasty and once used as an imperial residence, and the current estate was built in 1959 and has hosted more than 1,200 heads of state and government leaders. At the helm is Chinese celebrity chef Hao Baoli, who has held banquets for three generations of Chinese leaders and cooked for hundreds of heads of state.
The eight-course menu for the Diaoyutai Bellagio dinner is a sampling of ancient traditions and Chinese delicacies, including fish maw and matsutake soup, whole abalone with oyster sauce, honey locust bean with medlar and peach gum, and dragon beard noodles. The chef and his large staff travels to Las Vegas with much more than an incredible menu in tow; they’re bringing all the ceremonial dishware and traditional apparel to complete the experience.
Tickets for the dinner series are $500 per person and are available by calling 693-7075.