This morning I went to Bollywood, Bolivia, a magical bridal kingdom, and the streets of every uber-hip American city. True, it’s easy to go to a ton of different places while in Vegas, but I’m talking about the locations Catersource has taken me, all in one (too short!) morning. As caterers, you’re used to transporting others to a different place with your work– but how often to you get to be transported six, seven, eight times every day? It’s an only-at-Catersource sort of thing, huh?
My first session today was Culinary Faceoff, which pitted three teams of top-level caterers against each other with the theme Bollywood and Beyond — and they took it and ran. Epicurean Culinary Group’s executive chef Ted Strauch compared the colors of a Denver sunset to the spices used in Indian cooking, and used that inspiration to create a mindblowing setup based on the many hands of the Hindu goddess Durga. Meanwhile, Puff ‘n’ Stuff Catering’s Paul Lorrain displayed his chef’s smoker in a hookah, creating a marvellous effects with smoked scallops. Team Aramark’s Bollywood Diner made a huge splash, creating faux-diner favorites out of traditional Indian cuisine. All three entries were such a trip.
After an eye on world cuisine and lots of Latin flavors with Victor Gielisse, I skipped over to the Bellagio to visit the Wedding Luncheon and Galleries, and what a spectacle! With a princess carriage and manly seraphim presiding over the celebration, I sampled itty bitty minis and marshmallows and got a ton of ideas for the May/June Weddings issue. Stay tuned for more of those later! But the centerpiece of the faux foyer was an ornate carriage that would make any princess bride swoon with joy…
…Just like the centerpiece of the Out-of-the-Box Lunch made its attendees gasp with wonder. A giant food truck, carved from ice, sat in the center of the ballroom, serving delicious small plates. The Out-of-the-Box Lunch dripped with creativity from the food truck theme, as well as the amazing contest participants. We’ve got the votes in our office now and you’ll be able to find out the winner at our closing session on Wednesday.
And now I’m getting ready to transport myself to a world of decadence and delectability at PURE tonight for our big PURE Sensation party… but first, I’m going to chat with the master of exotic travels himself, Andrew Zimmern. Don’t miss him at our General Session tomorrow at 10:30 in the Palace Ballroom.