The Mansion at MGM Grand offers an unparalleled fine dining experience from France’s chef of the century, Joël Robuchon.
Desserts don’t get much more luxe than Le Chuao, a chocolate sphere filled with orange caramel and garnished with gold.
“Luxury is now appreciated in more heightened detail than it was when I first opened Jamin more than 30 years ago,” says Joël Robuchon, referring to his game-changing Michelin three-star restaurant in Paris. “The food was what made a luxury experience…. Now the food has to be perfect as before, but the surroundings have grown more important.” That’s why no detail is left to chance at Joël Robuchon Restaurant at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino—as one might expect from the man named “Chef of the Century” by Gault Millau and the holder of a record 27 Michelin stars. More than a decade after redefining fine dining in Las Vegas, his three-star namesake continues to inspire cultish devotion by stirring the senses from arrival to au revoir.
The Mansion’s grand entrance.
The evening commences with a gold limousine (if requested) transporting diners to MGM Grand’s ultraexclusive, invitation-only Mansion, where a foliage- and fountain-filled courtyard leads to the Pierre-Yves Rochon-designed restaurant. Reminiscent of a 1930s Paris home, plush aubergine velvet banquettes cozy up to black lacquered tables in the main room and a stunning green living wall adorns the adjacent room, while glimmers of gold lend sophisticated cohesion. Oozing Gallic chic, it’s both refined and inviting.
Le Bar (roasted sea bass) with lightly sautéed vegetables in barigoule jus, an artichokebased broth.
Robuchon’s cuisine may not appear traditionally French—his dishes light, free of heavy sauces and mounds of butter (save, perhaps, his classic pommes purée)—yet it’s decidedly French in philosophy. Here, restraint begets elegance. “When we create a dish, we don’t put more than three flavors,” explains Executive Chef Claude Le-Tohic. “We want the guest to be able to identify what they are eating.” This sophistication is what keeps globe-trotting gourmands flocking here repeatedly— some traveling by private jet just for dinner. Joël Robuchon is a destination.
À la carte is an option, but the 16-course degustation is the crown jewel. Seasonally inspired (with white truffle being its current muse), the menu unfolds as a perfectly choreographed performance, with greatest hits, such as the trilogy of caviar and langoustine ravioli, alongside modern culinary feats showcasing the kitchen’s artistry. “Luxury is something unique,” says Le-Tohic. “Every dish needs to be very different with flavor, color, texture, and presentation. That’s our philosophy.” It’s particularly important during a long progression of dishes for keeping diners’ interest by “surprising them with each course,” he adds.
Delightful details abound. The myriad bread options arrive via a veritable mobile boulangerie; the mignardise dessert cart tempts your inner child with 30-some dainty confections; and the Cognac trolley boasts Frapin Cuvée 1888 and the entire Hardy Perfection Cognac series. Equally impressive, the Wine Spectator Grand Award– winning wine program (only 72 programs nationwide hold this distinction) includes gems like Château Cheval Blanc 1947 (arguably one of the 20th century’s most celebrated wines) and vertical vintages of Château Petrus. The pairings are never preselected; rather, they are tailored to each individual’s palate. “We give guests the ability to cultivate the experience they want to enjoy with us,” says restaurant director Sebastian Dumonet.
At Joël Robuchon, the guest reigns supreme. “If you ask us to do something,” Dumonet adds, “we will do everything in our power to do so.” And what could be more luxurious than that? MGM Grand, 702-891-7925