Along with playing slots and attending a show, dining at a sumptuous buffet rounds out my list of Vegas must-dos. Every Sunday morning, Jasmine at Bellagio is transformed from a Chinese restaurant into a wonderland of brunchy delights complete with live cooking stations, a raw bar, and chocolate fountains.
Saturday nights in Sin City can be a bit of a blur, even for good kids like The Astronomer and me, so the Fountains Brunch was just the thing to replenish our minds and bodies before hitting the road home.
The setting here is as tranquil as can be. The room is filled with plenty of natural light and faces the famous fountains that never seem to get old.
Elegant touches throughout the room, like this elaborate charger plate, made the girly girl in me smile.
Both The Astronomer and I started with selections from the shellfish bar and cold appetizers station. After the decadent weekend that we had, a light start was the best way to go.
He chose a jumbo poached shrimp, citrus-ginger and sake cured salmon, lobster profiterole with citrus cream, blackberry yogurt parfait with granola, and fresh fruit. The plump and supple shrimp was his favorite bite on the plate.
My selections had a few items that were similar to The Astronomer’s, like the fresh fruit, cured salmon, and lobster profiterole, as well as a few extras.
The fresh-shucked oysters with mignonette were not-to-be missed, as were the dainty spoons with white asparagus panna cotta and Kobe beef carpaccio. My other favorites included the caviar-topped mini buckwheat waffle and duck terrine. The salmon and tuna nigiri were passable but mostly forgettable.
Midway through our first plates, a duo of Peking duck-stuffed buns arrived at the table. The specimens were meatier than expected and lacquered with hoisin sauce and garnished with scallions.
Another wonderful touch unique to the Fountains Brunch experience is the three-tiered baked goods tower that is served tableside. This morning’s selection included butter, jams, croissants, muffins, danishes, and compressed melon skewers.
Plate number two for The Astronomer included an Ahi tuna medallion served atop a lotus chip, shrimp and green bean salad, Dungeness crab cake, chicken apple sausage, and a slab of dry-aged prime rib. Each dish was well-prepared and seasoned just right.
On my second trip to the buffet, I chose a variety of cold appetizers (oysters, caviar, sushi), a few dim sum offerings (crystal prawn and spinach dumpling and sui mai), and a thick slab of bacon from the carving station.
The dim sum items weren’t as stellar as I had hoped, but everything else exceeded my expectations, especially the smokey bacon.
The Astronomer’s final plate included “Wu Xu–style” braised short ribs, sui mai pork dumplings, and pan–fried Asian chicken buns. I couldn’t resist stealing a bite of the caramelized short ribs, which were wonderfully sweet and tender.
Before veering officially into dessert territory, I dug into a slice of blueberry–stuffed white chocolate brioche French toast, which I ladled generously with vanilla-laced Vermont maple syrup. It was totally indulgent and absolutely delicious.
There’s a room dedicated solely to desserts adjacent to the hot cereal station. From ice cream to cakes to fondue, this space has it all. I carefully chose a passion fruit parfait, a raspberry parfait (for The Astronomer), a gold-leafed banana cake, a white chocolate bonbon, a hunk of nougat, marshmallows, and pate de fruits. The cocoa marshmallows dusted with coarse sugar made my day.
Fountains Brunch at Jasmine offered us one last hurrah before facing reality. What a way to go…
Jasmine at Bellagio
3600 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, NV 89109
There’s more to eat in Las Vegas:
- American Fish by Michael Mina – Las Vegas (Aria Resort & Casino)
- BarMasa – Las Vegas (Aria Resort & Casino)
- Bouchon Bakery – Las Vegas (The Venetian)
- Epicurean Epicenter at Bellagio Featuring Pinot Noirs from Pisoni, Siduri, & ROAR Wineries
- Food & Wine All-Star Weekend: A New American Lunch at Sage (Aria Resort & Casino)
- Jean Georges Steakhouse – Las Vegas (Aria Resort & Casino)
- Julian Serrano – Las Vegas (Aria Resort & Casino)
- Le Cirque – Las Vegas (Bellagio)
- Lotus of Siam – Las Vegas
- Mix – Las Vegas (Mandalay Bay)
- Oyster Bar – Las Vegas (Palace Station)
- Sen of Japan – Las Vegas