After winning at the roulette table at the ARIA Resort & Casino, my friend and I celebrated at the nearby Mandarin Oriental Hotel with a decadent lunch at MOzen Bistro before flying back to LA.
Walking into the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas, we immediately noticed a pleasing aroma of citrus tea notes, instead of cigarette smoke. The purifying air system filters the essence of orange, tea and cypress through the lobby and corridors of guest room floors.
We learned the older hotels in Las Vegas just don’t have the updated air purifiers. Since the 47 stories high Mandarin Oriental is one of the newer properties, not only does it offer a lovely smell, the staff strive to go beyond guests expectations in atmosphere, food and service.
Located on the 3rd floor, MOzen Bistro offers a relaxed ambience where guests can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner complemented by beautiful décor and impeccable service. The colors include gold, cream and mustard. Running through the soothing carpet is a swirl of black giving it a Vegas flair. An illuminated infinity light fixture is the center focal point in the room.
Sitting next to a window at a table for two, we overlooked the grand circular entrance of the Mandarin Oriental out towards Crystals Shopping and a big Hollywood neon sign illuminating Planet Hollywood across the street.
The Executive Sushi Chef Katsunori Kawaguchi is from Osaka, Japan and moved to Hawaii to open his own sushi restaurant. Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas hired him, when he sold his Hawaiian restaurant. He worked there for years until the Mandarin Oriental lured him over when they were planning to open.
“Chef Katz is a celebrity on the strip,” said our server Juan. “Guests staying at the Nobu hotel, come to MO to enjoy a meal or two at MOzen Bistro.” We learned that other chefs from other hotels come here too to eat a meal and talk with this well respected chef “Katz”.
Looking over the menu, we each ordered a glass of rose’ wine from Domaine du Deffends, Rose’d’une Nuit, Coteaux en Provence and a Thai beef salad. The salad was beautifully presented in a perfectly assembled circle of thinly sliced long strips of cucumber. The rib-eye meat was marinated in a chile paste with a sweet sesame and soy dressing. It was cooked perfectly offering a sweet and spicy balance of flavors.
Next we enjoyed a plate of shrimp tempura roll and a Bento box. The box had six sections with pieces of bbq eel, fatty tuna belly toro, Big eye tuna, dense tamagoyaki and tempura vegetables displayed in each compartment.
Since two of the chefs are Indian, the kitchen features a Tandoori ovens to make a chicken Tikka and roasted marinated chicken in creamy Indian curry with steamed basmati rice, naan and lentils.
We learned from Juan that above MOzen Bistro is the Mandarin Oriental Tea Lounge offering a classic English tea ceremony with freshly brewed loose leaf teas and divine English scones with imported Devonshire clotted cream. The Executive Chef Philippe makes house made marmalades and jams to enhance the pastries. There are an array of finger sandwiches and cupcakes and macarons.
Juan told us to ride up the elevator to appreciate the beauty of the zen-like retreat. As the elevator door opened, we noticed a Moet & Chandon vending machine. Guests and visitors may experience a mini Moet champagne moment by visiting the front desk to purchase a golden coin to insert into the machine.
This is just another example of how the Mandarin Oriental Hotel appeals to all senses, enabling everyone to feel like a winner when in Las Vegas.