Another beautiful day in Summerlin during our trip to Las Vegas and of course in the morning hours our grandchildren were in school; so what to do? There is always shopping to do and we found ourselves in Downtown Summerlin, which is really an outdoor mall that rather meanders around different major chain department stores and the usual collection of specialty stores that are found in most major malls across the country. It is the homogenization of America, as there are very few stores that are unique to any city any more. The same can be said for the selection of restaurants, as one finds the same chains where ever one travels to. For all intents and purposes, Las Vegas is a created city, so one does not really look for a certain type of cuisine that can be identified as local.
As we were wandering around we saw an outdoor patio adjacent to a restaurant, which is not that uncommon, but the name of the restaurant caught my eye. Grape Street Café Wine Bar & Cellar was intriguing, and we went in and discovered that we were in not only a restaurant, but a retail wine establishment as well. One could buy a bottle of wine for fifty percent off the restaurant wine price, or could buy a case for sixty percent off. As we were led to our table I also noticed that several of the tables had been recycled and were paneled with the end crates of wine, like Far Niente and Domaine de la Romanee-Conte. The tables were expensive. We just wanted something light to eat and of course a glass of wine, and the menu was very impressive; and there would have been many different directions we could have gone off for, if we were in the mood. Since it was a Friday during Lent, my Bride would not eat meat, so she selected a Caesar Salad and she asked if it could be topped with salmon, instead of shrimp or chicken, which they obliged to on the spot. Of course I may never get used to her ordering Caesar Salad when I think that she makes the best in the world, so I usually never order it out, out of deference to her ability. I ordered a Steak Salad and it was with Flank Steak, but what really sold me on it was the mixture of ingredients, as I dislike when a salad appears with just some lettuce and dressing. This salad had red and green onions, cucumbers, cherry hot peppers, pepperoncini, tomatoes and lemon-oregano dressing. My only request was to hold the Feta Cheese and our server suggested white cheddar instead and that sounded great. When the orders arrived, we were surprised at the size, we could have ordered one salad and split it between ourselves, but I have to admit that we did finish them, in spite of the size and we were very happy.
The wine carte was very nice and it was a challenge to settle on just two wines. My Bride since she has discovered Albarino decided that was what she wanted and she had Morgadio Albarino Rias Baixas 2014. Albarino is the star of Rias Baixas in Spain, as it accounts for almost ninety per cent of the wine production in the area and the varietal is grown in Spain, more than any other part of the world. Her wine was delightful, especially on a sunny day and it was one that I would have enjoyed drinking as well. I wanted a lighter wine as well, since I was having a salad, and I found something that sounded interesting. The glass of Balletto Rose of Pinot Noir 2016 from the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County and it was kind of a red wine to compliment the meat in my salad. It was a very good choice, as it was a nice crisp Rose without the sweetness that one can find often and I attribute it to the Pinot Noir. The color was pretty, maybe a bit frou-frou for me, but boy did it hit the spot during that lunch. Grape Street offered us a nice break from shopping, but it resumed after lunch.