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THE DISH: Viva Las Vegas! Plenty of treats in store for visitors

If you’ve got the urge to travel, there’s plenty of reasons to head to Las Vegas. And we’re not talking about the gambling or shopping but rather the food.

Starting this weekend, Catch at the Aria Resort & Casino is serving a new brunch.

The new brunch starts this weekend, served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

It's offering "showstopping takes on quintessential brunch favorites" that of course highlight seafood offerings such as truffle sashimi with tuna, hamachi, chili ponzu, caviar and black truffle purée; and a tartare trio with salmon, Hamachi, tobiko and wasabi crème fraiche.

Guests can also choose from an assortment of sushi including the Catch roll with crab, salmon and miso honey; the hellfire roll with spicy tuna two ways, pear and balsamic; and the MRC roll with seared tuna, shrimp, avocado, ponzu and brown butter.

Those looking for healthier selections can opt for the tuna poke bowl, which is made with avocado, tomato, sour apple, pineapple, yuzu-chili, brown rice and crispy taro; or the coconut kale chicken salad with poached organic chicken, heirloom tomato, roasted sweet potato, quinoa, avocado and shallot vinaigrette.

Anyone seeking brunch classics will have plenty to choose from including steak and eggs, which pairing a 6-ounce New York strip steak charred with two sunny side up eggs; and the egg white omelet with turkey bacon, artichoke, arugula, caramelized onions and goat cheese.

Those with a sweet tooth fanatics can indulge in the cinnamon roll pancakes with brown sugar cinnamon swirl, candied almonds and cream cheese frosting; or the anytime waffle tower, a visual spectacle created with maple, milk chocolate and raspberry ice cream, chocolate ganache, raspberry jam and toasted almonds.

And healthier diners can opt for the tuna poke bowl, which is made with avocado, tomato, sour apple, pineapple, yuzu-chili, brown rice and crispy taro; or the coconut kale chicken salad with poached organic chicken, heirloom tomato, roasted sweet potato, quinoa, avocado and shallot vinaigrette.

Catch is also serving up some of its signature dishes for brunch-goers with selections such as the A5 Japanese Miyazaki Wagyu, prepared tableside on Catch's signature hot stone, feature yuzu soy, garlic oil, Maldon sea salt and sesame; mushroom spaghetti with wild mushroom, snow peas, tomato and parmesan; and crunchy rice cakes with tuna tartare, wasabi and tobiko.

And what's brunch without a cocktail or special drink? Along with classic cocktails like bloody marys, mimosas and bellinis, diners can soon indulge in a variety of specialty beverages such as one too many, made with strawberry-infused Absolut Elyx vodka, coconut, avocado and lime; pineapple trainwreck, a mix of Finlandia Vodka, fresh-pressed pineapple juice, tarragon, lemon and Peychaud’s; and the grapefruit spritz, featuring brut champagne, gin, aperol, pamplemousse and Lillet Rose.

Nonalcoholic options include the toasted almond coffee, prepared with Califia Farms almond milk, roasted almonds, vanilla and espresso; and the eye opener, a fresh juice with ginger, lemon, orange and cayenne.

And coming soon are birdcage mimosas, which will consist of a bottle of champagne with three flavors of fresh-squeezed juices that will be served in a chic gold birdcage wrapped in ivy.

For reservations, call 877-230-2742 or visit ARIA’s website,

For more information on Catch, visit

Diners wanting something different at Aria can stop in at Din Tai Fung, the dumpling and noodle hotspot that opened in October.

Din Tai Fung has been wowing dumpling lovers from Taipei to Los Angeles with its xiao long bao, the Shanghai-style soup dumplings made with the highest quality Kurobuta pork and aromatic broth with fresh ginger and green onion. (The late Pulitzer Prize-winning food writer Jonathan Gold once described the restaurant's precisely handcrafted xiao long bao as “small miracles.”)

The chain now has seven locations in California, five in the Pacific Northwest and more than 170 restaurants in 13 countries worldwide.

The Las Vegas location is open nightly from 4 to 11 p.m. Reservations are highly recommended and can be made in advance at ARIA online.

Circus Circus

Speaking of fun this weekend, Circus Circus has lots going on with the return of its Circus Buffet on Saturday and the launch of the new Midwayland attraction.

Open daily, Circus Buffet serves breakfast and brunch from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. and dinner from 4:30 to 10 p.m. 

According to a news release, it will be back to serving delectable American comfort food daily for breakfast, brunch and dinner with a variety of American food including cooked-to-order omelets.

Weekday pricing is $21.99 for dinner, $19.99 for brunch for adults; and $16.99 for dinner, $14.99 for brunch for children. Weekend pricing is $22.99-$24.99 for adults, $15.99- $17.99 for children, while holiday meals run $23.99-$25.99 for adults and $15.99-$17.99 for children. The children designation is for those ages 4 to 10; children 3 and under eat free.

The casino also launched Midwayland, a gamer’s paradise spanning 4,742 square feet with the latest virtual reality and crane machine games on the market.

Offering fun for all ages, the area has 30 of the hottest games in the industry including Beat Saber, a virtual reality game played to the rhythm of adrenaline-pumping music. This latest attraction offers extended entertainment beyond the existing Midway, which has drawn in guests with classic arcade games, state-of-the-art video games and prizes, as well as The Adventuredome theme park and live circus acts that perform right on the casino floor.

Also new is a Midway Playcard cashless system that offers touchless payment while keeping track of any Redemption game points.

The casino's newly reopened Blue Iguana also rolled out new menu items.

The restaurant, which offers quick, fresh and authentic Mexican cuisine as well as souvenir beverages and cocktails, specializes in pork carnitas or carne asada platters, menudo, homemade tamales as well as a longtime favorite, Mexican street corn. More traditional favorites include enchiladas, burritos, nachos and more.

Guests can also enjoy souvenir cocktails including coronitas, margaritas as well as Mexican-style bottled beverages.

Blue Iguana is open 4 to 11 p.m. Fridays and 11a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays. To view the full menu or for more information on the casino, call 800-634-3450 or visit

Caesars Palace

Earlier this month, Caesars Palace reopened its Bacchanal Buffet by hosting a highly-anticipated event with a stunning dance number filled with glitz, glamour and chef coats.

You may not get the fanfare now, but guests are still expected to enjoy an unparalleled experience in the newly renovated space showcasing enhancements to its seafood, carving, American and Latin kitchens, as well as the dining room.

Bacchanal's menu has been expanded with nearly 100 new dishes to the already impressive menu that includes more than 100 vegan and vegetarian options.

New dim sum-style food carts roam the dining room offering traditional dim sum as well as on-trend dishes like foie gras PB&J, spicy seafood boil bags and Japanese wagyu hot dogs.

Innovative composed dishes being served include turmeric grilled baby octopus with XO chili jam, cheeseburger bao, chipotle bourbon barbecue oysters and duck carnitas quesadillas.

Plant-based eaters can still indulge in dishes such as quinoa-stuffed baby sweet potatoes with fried kale, tomato tartar and coconut-carrot gazpacho.

A reimagining of the Mediterranean and Asian kitchens includes a new mezze bar and authentic Roman-style pizza along with a wider selection of Southeast Asian flavors featuring Laotian, Filipino, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese specialties.

The dessert bar offers eye-catching treats like earl grey mousse, salted caramel popcorn and death by chocolate cupcakes, yuzu tart, ube chiffon cake and more than 10 all-natural gelato flavors.

And don't worry, Bacchanal still serves fan favorites like cold and steamed crab legs, as well as shrimp cocktail, from the all-new seafood kitchen.

Bacchanal is open for dinner from 4 to 10 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Travelers planning ahead of time can now make reservations for the buffet through, something that has not been available since the restaurant launched in 2012.

For more on Caesars Palace, visit

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Stefani Dias can be reached at 661-395-7488. Follow her on Twitter at @realstefanidias.