4 thoughts from Epicurean Charitable Foundation’s M.E.N.U.S. scholarship gala

Epicurean Charitable Foundation secretary and South Point’s director of food operations Michael Kennedy stands with a few of the organization’s scholars at this year’s scholarship event MENUS on Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, at the Luxor.
Photo: Bryan Steffy / WireImage

Friday night the Epicurean Charitable Foundation celebrated its 12th annual M.E.N.U.S. (Mentoring & Educating Nevada's Upcoming Students) scholarship gala, which raises funds to support Clark County School District graduates studying hospitality at four-year colleges or universities. Learn more about the organization here, and read on for highlights from Friday night's event:

Different itinerary: Epicurean Charitable Foundation switched up the format for the annual event this year. In lieu of a live music performance during the gala’s dine-around, the organization opted to instead treat its guests to Luxor’s new Jabbawockeez’s show, PRiSM, beforehand. A cocktail hour preceded the hotel’s headlining production, allowed guests to socialize as they sipped delicious watermelon cocktails.

The entertainment: Luxor’s resident headliners delivered some smooth moves and a few knee-slapping laughs during the special showing, but what was most memorable? Seeing the city’s top food and beverage executives break it down during the “Harlem Shake.” If you uploaded a video of this to YouTube, we want to know.

Weather conditions: Friday night turned out to not be ideal for an outdoor dine-around. High winds and low temperatures weren’t expected by many in attendance, and I wasn’t the only blazer-less male shivering through dinner. The winers and diners powered through, though, with thanks to the heaters sprinkled throughout the Luxor pool deck. Liquid warmth, courtesy of the numerous beverage booths, was also available, though I gravitated towards Sambalatte’s freshly pulled espresso shots and steamed milk.

Best bites: While some of the Strip’s top dining outlets were doling out samples, I was more impressed by what off-Strip eateries were offering: Veal marsala from Hugo’s Cellar and Hops & Harvest’s heirloom tomato salad were two scrumptious standouts. Still, the Boulevard’s bites didn’t disappoint. Tao’s oxtail fried rice, the braised beef from the Pub at Monte Carlo and Don Vito’s gorgonzola and pear salad were all quite tasty, as well.

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