One time I was staying at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. It was the last day of our trip and we were taking the red-eye flight back to Toronto, which wasn’t leaving until 11:30 Pacific time. After we checked out we had a bunch of time (all day) to kill before we went to the airport. I had a couple of complimentary drink tickets from the MGM Grand which I wanted to use, so my wife and I were walking around the hotel so I could drink my free Dos Equis (you’ll notice me always celebrating free things in this blog), while we looked for a place to eat dinner. When we saw ‘Diego’, she asked if I wanted Mexican food. I was already drinking Mexican beer, but I wasn’t too hungry. I have a habit of eating so much when in Vegas that by the last day of the trip, I’m just ordering salads and cereal as a measure of self-preservation. I also thought that eating Mexican before getting on a red-eye had to be a bad idea.
I finally agreed to go to Diego, so we went in and had a seat. I think it was only 5pm or something, so the restaurant wasn’t busy yet. We sat down and started eating some tortilla chips when the waiter came by and asked if we wanted some guacamole with our chips. It sounded pretty casual, like it might be complimentary like the salsa, or perhaps it would cost extra, but I do love me some guacamole, so I said ‘yes please’, and the waiter disappeared. At this point, my wife (who is a faster reader than me) whispers the price of the guacamole to me. This story is from a couple of years ago, so I don’t remember how much it was, but it was in the $12-$16 range. For guacamole??
Now it’s important to understand where I am in the whole ‘food chain’ thing. I am not a high roller by any means. This was our 2nd trip to Vegas that year however, so my wife and I are not necessarily poor either. On a regular night out at home, I might spend $7 or $8 on some guacamole. On vacation, maybe $10. This guacamole seemed a bit pricey to me at the time. Not going to break me, but pretty expensive for guacamole.
The waiter is gone though, so we’re just going to enjoy this guacamole, and for that price I’m expecting that it will be pretty good. Then this happened…..
This Mexican guy came out with a cart and started making guacamole right in front of our eyes. Made to order. Cut the avocados, squeezed the lime, added however much of whatever we wanted…….. I was not expecting this. He was a great guy. He chatted us up while he made our guacamole like a true professional in a fraction of the time it would have taken me to do it.
This was a show! This was worth every penny. I don’t dine like this every day, and sometimes it’s the little details like this that make your experience. The food at this place was great. The service was excellent, but I can’t get my mind around the guacamole show and how much I enjoyed it.
If you ever make it out to the MGM Vegas, don’t forget to go to ‘Diego’ and get some guacamole. Just one of the millions of things that will add to your Vegas experience.
This is my partial review of MGM Grand on Yelp:
Let me preface this review by saying that, if there was a choice between getting a root canal and coming to Vegas, I’d seriously have to stop and think about it. If you’re a tourist, you’ll find that Vegas is like China. Both try to suck money from you at every turn, except Vegas tries to be more *civilized* by masking the sucking in the form of resort fees, taxes, tips, high-priced drink and food. Add to this the fact that I have as much interest in gambling as have in a threesome with one male orangutang and a pink bowling ball and you’ll understand my frame of mind when I’m in Vegas. Unfortunately, despite my feelings about this place, I’ve had to visit Vegas every year in January for business for the last 8 years.
The MGM Grand Hotel is a monstrosity of shiny green glass on the North end of the Vegas Strip. It’s shaped like a pile of staggered Lego bricks, and when you’re inside the hotel, you’ll sometimes wish the bricks will just cave the hell in on you.
Oh Susan….. You need to turn that Vegas frown upside down. I don’t even know if I want to read the rest of that review, although I am morbidly curious. Next January before you go, I will personally write an itinerary for you that you can’t possibly not enjoy (double negative, I know, but it had to be done for dramatic purposes). You will be my greatest achievement in Vegas conversion. To the point where you will be super excited 6 months in advance of any Vegas trip you might take. You’ll not only go for business, but you’ll start going on your vacation as well. I will stand tall upon a mountain of defeated travel agents, and enthusiasts, and hoist that itinerary in the air like a trophy and say “SUSAN LOVES VEGAS NOW!!!! ALL BECAUSE OF ME!!!!! PAY ME VEGAS, PAY ME!!!!!!!!!”
I heartily look forward to your vigorous Vegas brainwashing. If the MGM Grand review looks bad, you should’ve seen the one I gave for L’Atelier Joel Robuchon in the MGM Grand (disappointment – support your local McDonald’s instead!!)
I love “live” guac tableside. It’s usually accompanied by “live” tequila in my glass so double happiness for me.
Slice of Heaven. We don’t get too much tableside guac in Canada!
Also – I’m enjoying this picture filled blog!
Haha… This one might be more up your alley. Can’t have a travel blog without pictures!
you know me, I’m like a 2nd grader – pictures help