It’s Vegas Baby! Go Big or Go Home…

We all know the old saying, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” but what about the food? Though 1793 miles away, Chef Jeremy Wood has brought a Las Vegas style menu all the way to Northwest Indiana. Inside the heart of the Blue Chip Casino, Hotel & Spa lies “It’s Vegas Baby!,” a 152 seat restaurant that opened in 2009. On May 1st, 2012, (that’s Tuesday!) Chef Jeremy is launching his fresh, new menu featuring Midwest favorites with a Vegas twist. “With our outstanding selection of contemporary and classic dishes, we’re certain It’s Vegas Baby! will be the new favorite eatery for local residents as well as Blue Chip regulars,” says Anthony Schaefer, Blue Chip Food and Beverage Director.

Chef Jeremy Wood began is 16-year culinary career at the age of 14 at a local restaurant in his hometown and soon stepped into the position of lunch cook. He moved on to Blue Chip Casino seven years later, cooking at William B’s Steakhouse and then helping to open It’s Vegas Baby! and The Game in late 2009. His passion is executing a cutting-edge menu and running a successful restaurant. Jeremy is inspired to cook by observing trends in the culinary/restaurant industry, drawing on the classic recipes he learned on the job and giving them modern twists. His favorite meals involve recipes that challenge him through classic techniques and enjoys using specific ingredients and methods that will give the final dish a unique and wonderful flavor.

The new menu pays homage to Las Vegas with “Rat Pack” inspired choices and house specialties. Las Vegas Shrimp Cocktail, Sam’s Town Braised Pork Shank and The IP Lobster & Cheese Ravioli are just a few of the dishes that can be found on the menu.

This past week, I had the pleasure of meeting and enjoying a sneak preview of Chef Jeremy’s new menu (don’t hate!) Go big or go home was definitely theme of the night. You aren’t going to believe your eyes when you see the full sized portions of these entrees. Seriously. I could eat for two days on one plate. Being from the Midwest, one aspect I could appreciate was every dish was comfortable and recognizable. Let’s face it, Mid-westerners love their comfort food: meatloaf, pot roast, chicken pot pie, pizza and macaroni and cheese. “We make our own semolina pasta and pizza dough right here,” says Chef Jeremy Wood. With the ability to “Build-Your-Own Mac & Cheese”, each person can be pleased with their favorite mix-ins, including caramelized onions, chorizo sausage and garlic shrimp (just to name a few.)

It’s difficult to see the proportion of the food in these pictures…but that Ultimate Bacon Burger above? It’s TEN OUNCES of prime ground beef loaded with apple-wood smoked bacon, Canadian bacon, prosciutto, bacon jam (I’d love a jar please.and.thank.you), shredded lettuce and a sliced beefsteak tomato. Also? I’m such the sucker for hand-cut French fries and homemade ketchup…HOMEMADE ketchup for gosh sakes. Another item I had fun with was the Stuffed Potato Spring Rolls – potato, cheddar, onion and sour cream filled spring rolls served with a bacon cheddar cheese sauce. Because I have seafood allergies, I wasn’t able to try the Lobster Ravioli or the Shrimp Scampi pizza. If I could’ve eaten them, they probably would have been my favorite…especially the ravioli (in which I did try the sauce and didn’t die…sinfully rich…much love.)

Can we just talk about dessert for a minute? Get this…The Big Banana ( I SO want to go “there”…but I’ll behave…for now.) Imagine…a martini glass the size of your head filled with layers of caramelized banana, strawberry compote and pineapple topped with mounds of vanilla bean ice cream, whipped cream, candied pecans and chocolate fudge. Long spoons and fireworks…it was like an exploding orgy of sugar that I personally enjoyed to the fullest. I should mention that The Big Banana is supposed to satisfy four…*shifts eyes*

Overall, the new menu should be able to please anyone in your dining party. No guesswork found here. The food is recognizable and comfortable allowing a stress free dining experience for everyone. It’s Vegas Baby! is open for dinner Wednesday through Sunday from 5pm to 10 pm, followed by entertainment after 10pm Wednesday through Sunday.

The Big Banana…satisfies four…still giggling like a 12 year old school girl. I can’t help myself.

Honest Blogger Found Here: I was openly invited to this tasting sneak preview. Info and photos were supplied.  No monetary compensation or writing was required. I just wanted to share as I had a great time and truly enjoyed meeting all of the fun people involved.  As always, 100% my opinion. Any questions? My Disclosure Policy can be found here.
17 Responses to It’s Vegas Baby! Go Big or Go Home…
  1. BigFatBaker
    May 2, 2012 | 3:26 PM

    I want to go visit asap!! I thought about working for blue chip this summer but (stupidly) decided against it. Too bad because I could really go for the burger and big banana about now 😉

    • Toni
      May 2, 2012 | 5:02 PM

      Wait…are you from this area??? Or…were you referring to a Blue Chip somewhere else?

  2. megryansmom
    May 4, 2012 | 8:13 AM

    Mmm look at all that bacon! We haven’t been to Blue Chip in years, might be worth driving to for that burger!

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:43 AM

      Sounds like a meet-up to me! :)

  3. Lisa
    May 4, 2012 | 8:44 AM

    That food looks so yummy!

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:43 AM

      It was very good, Midwestern comfort food.

  4. Stephanie Precourt
    May 4, 2012 | 9:06 AM

    Oh yum! I haven’t been to Blue Chip yet but someone was telling me they also have the best massages there. Lunch and a massage? Yes.

    Steph

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:45 AM

      The spa DOES sound wonderful there. I wonder if they would like to sponsor an “event”…ya know…just to try things out. 😉 lol

  5. Colleen
    May 4, 2012 | 11:14 AM

    GARALARALAR… {Homer Simpson drool}

    Sounds amazing!

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:45 AM

      Exactly! The only thing that could make it more complete…is a Homer Simpson Doughnut :)

  6. Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy Oh Boy
    May 4, 2012 | 3:26 PM

    thanks now i’m totally hungry :)

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:46 AM

      Making people hungry is totally the point of food blogging! Oh…and making friends and going fun places and all that…:)

  7. ConnieFoggles
    May 4, 2012 | 3:57 PM

    Don’t make a comment about the Big Banana. The burger, fries and pickle made my stomach growl.

    • Toni
      May 9, 2012 | 6:47 AM

      *thumbs up* I’ve been tempted to just drive back up there for that burger. :)

  8. Vikki
    May 19, 2012 | 12:39 AM

    Ahh, these photos are making my mouth water.

    • Toni
      May 23, 2012 | 7:31 AM

      I know, right? I need to get back up there soon. :)

  9. Bella
    February 14, 2014 | 8:25 PM

    Thanks for spending the time to debate this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you turn out to be an expert, would you mind updating your blog with more details?

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