Prior to our visit to DOCG, all I knew about Scott Conant were his appearances on food television. His peers seem to respect him and I was looking for an Italian touch to this trip to Vegas so he seemed a perfect fit. How lucky am I? This experience was easily the best in Vegas this trip, far and away the best.
Located in the Cosmopolitan, DOCG is a great
mix of swanky shee-sheeness and old school charm. DOCG stands for
Denominazione di origine controllata, the Italian governmental body
that ensures the quality of ingredients from that country,
particularly cheeses and wines.
It appears that the same attention to source, detail and process used by this board are also applied in the kitchen here in Vegas, and the results speak for themselves.
Bread arrived warm in a basket with the traditional mix of good
olive oil and balsamic vinegar. There was something particularly
fruity about the vinegar (I thought it might be cherry) which really
stood out compared to previous versions Italian bread dip. We split
the DOCG Pizza as an app. We followed with a salad, the surf and
turf special of the day, and the duck pasta offering. The pizza came
highly touted and deserved every accolade. Burned off in a brick
oven the crust had the chewy slightly burned taste and texture that
is unique to New York. The toppings of a fonduta which is a fondue
sauce made from Fontina cheese, black truffle, and a poached egg.
The egg arrived in the center of the pizza which was crushed with a
spoon and spread around the pie. Seriously, crazy good. Rich, chewy,
good. Good in every way.
You Just Have No Idea!
Nice Salad, But Was Outclassed by What is Coming...
Surf and Turf Perfection, The Pesto Was Particularly Nice Addition
Scallops Precisely Done with Sun Chokes Three Ways
My mom ordered the salad with arugula, pine nuts, gorgonzola, green apples and a balsamic vinaigrette. It was a great example of the genre but couldn’t hope to keep up with the two other dishes. I ordered the split grill surf and turf with a 14oz. NY Strip and diver scallops. The prime steak was done to an incredible mid-rare and rested atop a polenta cake which had a nice pesto perched on top. The steak was great…again didn’t crack the top three but seriously good. The polenta and pesto added both a bright and rich touch to the steak. The scallops were perfectly done again…Olives wishes they had managed these sea born jewels. They were served over an assortment of sun chokes, Sauteed, pureed, and fried chips. One of our dining companions and I recently had a discussion about ordering scallops in a restaurant, the decision being why bother when so few could do better than we can at home…DOCG is one of the few that hit the mark and kept going.
The best offering of the night turned out to
be the duck based pasta. Listed a Pici (pronounced peachy), braised
duck sauce and black truffles it arrived in a bowl; thick doughy
pasta strands, insanely rich sauce, incredibly opulent duck, if you
ever get a chance try this! The duck is richer than any pot roast I
have ever tried or heard of. The sauce clinging to the obese
spaghetti had the same richness as the duck, except it was perfectly
cut down by wine and spices to keep the dish from becoming too heavy
I'm Just Having a Moment of Silence...
We Thought We Had Hit It Big With the Cheesecake, Just Sweet Delicious
CARAMEL BUDINO. Worth Flight Alone
Inside the Apex of Dessert
Our server Cassidy was so good at his entire gig including
suggesting superior dishes that he was the first to talk us into the
dessert menu this weekend. We ordered the cheesecake and took
Cassidy’s suggestion and tried the caramel budino. The cheesecake
was of the ricotta variety and was just sweet enough with a
shortbread crust, almond brittle and topped with orange slices
soaked in Amaretto. We would have been ecstatic with the cheesecake
but then we tried the budino. Bottom layer, caramel custard with
vanilla bean. Topped with caramel sauce. Topped with quenelle of
whipped cream. I have eaten a great many desserts in my 40+ years.
Dessert was reborn for me this night. Familiar but better than the
familiar, way, way better. The bean studded custard at the base was
sweet but just enough to balance the intense sweetness of the
caramel sauce sitting on top. The whipped cream had large specks of
salt resting on top and when your spoon dives to the bottom and
breaches with all three layers, we stopped talking. The pictures of
my companions didn’t turn out well but I’m including them so you
have some indication of how good this stuff is. Not a single miss
the entire night, service or product. What a rare treat! Chef
Conant, Mad Respect. We will be reporting from a Scarpetta as soon