Sherman's Food Adventures: Gordon Ramsay Hell's Kitchen

Gordon Ramsay Hell's Kitchen

Here we are, doing the touristy thing while in Vegas.  Yep, we finally made it out to Hell's Kitchen located right on the strip in front of Caesar's Palace.  I've wondered about this place for quite some time as I keep walking past it (when I visit).  I considered Carbone but couldn't get a reso.  Ironically, I had to move my reservation since I tried to visit The Buffet at the Wynn without prepaying first.  Lineup looked to be 2 hours, so I ended up eating an early dinner at Hell's Kitchen as a result.

Strategically ordering, my daughter went for the HK Signature Prix Fixe Menu ($89.95) where she chose the Pan-Seared Scallops as her starter.  It featured lightly caramelized scallops on a bed of English pea puree with pickled fennel and sherry-braised bacon lardons.  The scallops were delicate and sweet, but the sear could've been more aggressive.  Scallops were sliced in half, so they were rather small too.  Loved the puree as it was smooth and naturally sweet.

I decided to go for the Steak Tartare with Piedmontese beef, dijon mustard aioli, black truffle caviar and sous-vide egg yolk.  I thought this was really good where the beef was super buttery tender.  It really did melt-in-my-mouth.  Furthermore, it was inherently flavorful.  Loved the creaminess of the egg yolk while the aioli built on top of that with some zip.  Of course the luxuriousness of the black truffle caviar provided some extra umami.  I wasn't a huge fan of the crackers though as they were a bit hard.  Would've liked to see crostinis instead.

My son went big and had the Lobster Risotto complete with a whole butter poached lobster tail.  Oh this was delicious as the truffle risotto was perfectly executed where the aborio rice was tender yet still retaining an appealing bite.  Plenty of woodsy truffle to go with the ample amount of parmesan cheese which meant the risotto was rich and nutty.  The addition of crispy onions on top add the necessary contrast in texture.  The lobster was perfect being naturally sweet with the classic rebound texture.

Viv went a bit boring with the Quinoa Salad sporting honey crisp apples, dried currants & cranberries, candied pecans and ricotta salata.  This was partly due to her not wanting to order the Seared Foie Gras (only other hot appie available).  Boo...  Well, this a good amount of salad that was rather refreshing with the sweetness of apples and the dried fruit.  Quinoa had a good bite while being cooked through.

For her main, my daughter had only one choice with the Prix Fixe Menu - the classic Beef Wellington.  As you can clearly see in the picture, the beef tenderloin was beautifully rare.  It was buttery tender and was properly rested.  Puff pastry was nicely browned and lightly crispy.  Underneath, the duxelle was aromatic from the herbs and earthy from the mushrooms.  The demi-glace was silky with plenty of depth and accented the meat nicely.

My son got his standby dish in the Braised Short Rib atop a Yukon potato cake and bloomsdale spinach.  The whole thing was topped with crispy fried onion rings and beef jus.  This was pretty much textbook where the short rib was fork-tender and was super soft.  It still retained texture though and the beef jus was impactful and rich.  Both the potato cake and onions provided crispiness and the starch need to balance the dish.

I decided to go all out and had the 12 oz Mishima Reserve Wagyu Ribeye with glazed maitake mushrooms and shishito peppers.  Yes, this was indeed tasty.  I know, it wasn't exactly cheap, but I thought this was well worth the money.  There was a beautiful char on the outside where the smokiness and caramelization was apparent.  The steak itself was well-seasoned and prepared perfectly medium-rare.  Buttery and tender, the steak also benefited from the jus underneath.  I found the maitake mushrooms to be impactfully woodsy and was a nice compliment to the meat.

For Viv, she saw all of us having red meat and decided to deviate with the Crispy Skin Salmon.  There was a hard sear on the skin side and hence, it was uniformly crunchy until the last bite.  The fish itself was properly seasoned.  We found most of the fish to be tender and flaky with only the ends being a bit more cooked (as expected).  It sat on a bed of beluga lentils and citrus herb beurre blanc with a shaved fennel salad.  With enough acidity, the beurre blanc did not eat heavy.

For good measure, my son decided to add the Baked Macaroni & Cheese with smoked gouda and crispy prosciutto.  We really enjoyed this as the pasta was al dente, yet was still tender enough.  By using smoked gouda, the mac & cheese had considerable depth that was apparent with even the aroma.  The cheese sauce was seasoned enough that there was enough flavor.  It didn't hurt that that the crispy prosciutto added even more saltiness.

Onto dessert, as part of the Prix Fixe Menu, we were served the Sticky Toffee Pudding with dulce de leche ice cream.  A Hell's Kitchen classic, this did not disappoint.  This was so moist and relatively light.  Many versions of this dessert are super heavy where you can only have one bite.  Yes, like usual, this was pretty sweet with deep rich flavors.  However, it wasn't to the point where it was overbearing.

We chose one of the lighter desserts to balance off the toffee pudding in the Coconut 3-Ways including coconut sorbet, coconut cake and passionfruit caramel.  I guess the 3rd way is the halved coconut?  Whatever the case, this was so refreshing and a great finish to our meal.  The sorbet was aromatic and semi-sweet while the passionfruit added sweetness and tang.  Overall, we enjoyed our meal at Hell's Kitchen as the service was excellent and the execution was on point.  Was it the best meal we ever had?  Well no, but it was solid enough that the money we paid was put to good use.  Still lots of other options in this price range.

The Good:
- Excellent service
- On point execution
- Purposeful flavors

The Bad:
- Considering all the options in Vegas, not sure this is the first place I'd go to in this price-range


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