Bust out your calendars and get your credit cards ready — Vegas Uncork’d by Bon Appétit heads back to the Strip and earlier than ever. Instead of spanning Mother’s Day weekend, the ninth version of biggest culinary event in Las Vegas comes to Aria, the Bellagio, Caesars Palace and the MGM Grand April 23-26. The star wattage of chefs such as Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Gordon Ramsay, Julian Serrano, François Payard, Masa Takayama, Michael Mina and Guy Savoy light up the lineup.
The event moves to an earlier time because many attendants and chefs alike found scheduling around the Mother’s Day weekend tricky at best, says Adam Rapoport, Bon Appétit editor in chief.
New event this year include a brunch at Julian Serrano’s new Lago, opening right beforehand at the Bellagio, a Hell’s Kitchen dinner with Gordon Ramsay and more.
Head over to the Vegas Uncork’d Website to pick up tickets to the returning Grand Tasting, still taking over the Garden of the Gods on the Friday night of the event, chefs counter at the Buffet at Aria and more. New to the Grand Tasting, a station that will highlight the winner of Ramsay’s new show Best New Restaurant on Bravo. Rapoport says he’s still trying to secure an event with the show’s host Tom Colicchio. Also new, Master Series events with more chefs all throughout the weekend.
While 13 events are on sale now, expect 10 to 15 more to be released in January. Here now, a look at what’s new and what’s coming back, at least so far.
Prime Time with Jean-Georges Vongerichten (Bellagio), Thursday, April 23: Celebrated chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten invites you to experience steakhouse dining at its finest during this exclusive dinner event. The lakeside patio of Prime Steakhouse sets the stage for an elegant evening and offers magnificent views of The Fountains of Bellagio. Guests will be treated to a special four-course dinner showcasing various cuts of beef served by Jean-Georges himself with premier wine pairings.
Decadent Delights with Master Chocolatier François Payard (Caesars Palace), Thursday, April 23: Experience French fare at its finest at Master Chocolatier François Payard's award-winning pâtisserie. Guests can expect first-class service and all the elegance of an authentic Parisian bistro as they delight in a selection of sweet and savory canapés and one-of-a-kind chocolate creations paired with premiere wines.
In Hell's Kitchen with Gordon Ramsay (Caesars Palace), Saturday, April 25: Think you can take the heat in Gordon Ramsay's Hell's Kitchen? Don’t miss this one-time opportunity to witness what it’s like to be a contestant on your favorite TV competition show! During this high-energy event, guests will be divided into red and blue teams—and get to experience the action of Hell's Kitchen as award-winning chef Gordon Ramsay fires up one of his signature dishes during an exciting live cooking demo. All red and blue team participants will enjoy a corresponding dinner along with Ramsay and Hell's Kitchen winning chefs Christina Wilson and Scott Commings.
An Italian Brunch at Lago (Bellagio), Sunday, April 26: Be one of the first to experience the new restaurant from award-winning chef Julian Serrano. Opening in spring 2015, Lago will offer a new take on social dining with a menu of creative Italian small plates and an innovative cocktail and wine program. Guests can savor a selection of Serrano’s signature dishes and a build-your-own cocktail bar during this elegant seated lunch. Snag a special seat on the spacious outdoor patio with exquisite views of The Fountains of Bellagio.
Beer and The Beast (Bellagio), Sunday, April 26: Get ready for a truly unforgettable dining experience. Renowned for his commitment to using sustainable and organically raised products, Sensi executive chef Royden Ellamar will take head-to-tail cooking to the extreme during this carnivore’s dream dinner. Large platters of whole-cooked animals, including pig and goat, will be presented throughout the extraordinary meat-filled meal, to be enjoyed with a selection of craft brews.
Celebrity Chef Brunch: A French Affair at Bardot Brasserie (Aria), Sunday, April 26: Enjoy classic French fare at Michael Mina’s new restaurant, Bardot Brasserie, a nod to Hemingway’s Paris. An all-star roster of internationally celebrated chefs: Michael Mina, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Jean-Philippe Maury, Shawn McClain and Julian Serrano will serve up a bountiful brunch featuring classic French dishes paired with world-class French wines—all while taking in the sultry sounds of a live French jazz band. Ooh làlà!
Chefs' Counter: All-Star Feast (Aria), Thursday, April 23: Kick off the weekend in true Vegas-style — with Aria’s stellar lineup of A-list celebrity chefs! Mingle with culinary superstars Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Julian Serrano, Michael Mina, Masa Takayama and Shawn McClain as they take over The Buffet at Aria and put their gourmet spin on self-service style dining. Celebrate the start of Vegas Uncork’d with unlimited champagne and award-winning specialties from world-renowned chefs.
Beef & Bourbon Dinner at Old Homestead (Caesars Palace), Thursday, April 23: The Master Series Dinner with Greg and Marc Sherry is back by popular demand, but this year he’s created a stellar lineup of steakhouse-style dishes to be paired with specialty bourbons. Don’t miss your chance to experience the best aged and hand-selected meats accompanied by exclusive and rare bourbon selections during a seated dinner at this iconic American steakhouse.
Grand Tasting (Caesars Palace), Friday, April 24: Are you ready for the ultimate culinary indulgence? Enjoy a staggering variety of signature dishes prepared by the world's most celebrated chefs. Step into the luxurious Garden of the Gods Pool Oasis at Caesars Palace to experience the best of the best—with more than 50 award-winning chefs, free-flowing wines, and spirits from around the world. INSIDER TIP: Beat the crowd with an Early Access ticket! You’ll get exclusive early admission to sample the freshest dishes and drinks from your favorite chefs and top mixologists.
Mix Master: Pour Like a Pro (Aria), Saturday, April 25: Break out your best bartending skills during this fun-filled, interactive cocktail competition and seminar. Before the high-energy throwdown, participants will get creative inspiration as they watch master mixology expert Craig Schoettler shake up Aria's signature drinks. Then, contestants will break up into teams, choose from a selection of fresh market ingredients, and compete against fellow participants to see who can mix up the best original cocktail. The winning team will score a grand prize and have their drink featured on the menu.
Indulge and Imbibe: A Hakkasan Food & Wine Experience (MGM Grand), Saturday, April 25: A one-of-a-kind culinary experience awaits at Hakkasan Las Vegas Restaurant beginning with a six-course dinner featuring the restaurant’s globally acclaimed menu. Prepared by Michelin-starred Chef Ho Chee Boon and his team of highly skilled wok and dim sum chefs, guests will be led on a journey though the art of modern Cantonese cooking coupled with exquisite wines as selected by Group Head of Wine, Christine Parkinson, the world renowned curator of Hakkasan’s award-winning wine program. Parkinson will host the affair and guide guests through the unique Hakkasan wine selection process where they will feel like a master sommelier for the evening.
Little Italy From City To Strip: Rao's Italian Brunch with the Pellegrinos (Caesars Palace), Sunday, April 26: Say ciao to an afternoon affair at Rao’s where you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to Southern Italy. Join Frank Pellegrino, Jr. for a special multicourse feast featuring all the favorite family recipes, authentic specialties, refreshing specialty cocktails and non-stop entertainment that comes with a traditional Italian Sunday brunch.
Third Annual Chase Sapphire Preferred Grill Challenge: The competition returns this year with two Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts students battling it out as sous chefs alongside celebrity chefs for scholarship funds, courtesy of Chase Sapphire Preferred.