Las Vegas is great because you can have any experience you want. On one of my most memorable trips to Vegas my friends and I spent a morning drinking (too much) vodka and playing blackjack at Bellagio then hopping into a limo to the El Cortez for some .25 cent roulette. It was an epic day for the ages but what stands out was the ability to go from being a high roller to a low low roller within a few hours.
Even though I live in Las Vegas now and have access to learning about places I never would have found as a tourist I still enjoy going out and enjoying the finer things in life like I did as a tourist. For me that includes a great steak, a cigar and a really good drink. I shared my favorite steakhouses earlier this year and now I want to share great places where you can enjoy a great cigar and drink.
There are two great cigar lounges on the Vegas strip that offer different experiences. Casa Fuente is located in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace and has a large selection of cigars in a massive humidor. While they offer fantastic sangria and mojitos they also have very limited edition Glenfiddich and other single malt whiskies which compliment a cigar very nicely. Every now and again Casa Fuente will hold tastings of limited edition high end spirits (like Glenfiddich) that go nicely with a cigar. Casa Fuente is so devoted to high end booze that they have a special spirits society that’s open for anyone to join. Casa Fuente really is the best of both worlds. Unfortunately due to complaints from visitors at the Forum Shops the smoking space has been cut in half. You now have to smoke by the bar. This isn’t such a bad deal because the cigars and drinks are great but it was nice to have the extra space to spread out.
Another great place to grab a cigar and drink is Andre’s at Monte Carlo. Andre’s is a French restaurant which also has a small cigar lounge. The lounge may look small but the ventilation is so good that you’ll leave without smelling like an ash tray (which is nice). Wine Spectator says that Andre’s has one of the best wine cellars in North America but I normally prefer a stiff drink or cocktail with my cigar. Andre’s also has a massive cognac collection that has bottles that cost as much as $35,000 each. Instead of having a large humidor Andre’s has a small selection of cigars that you can choose from using an iPad. This alleviates having to ask what every cigar is like. I generally don’t like iPads for menus but this works well for the novice cigar smoker like me.
Andre’s has a couple not-so-secret offerings that you wouldn’t know about unless people like me told you. Every month they have different “Whisky Wednesday” events where you can enjoy unlimited tastings of high end whisky to go along with your cigars. About.com has more details on Whisky Wednesday. Andre’s also offers a Happy Hour menu where you can enjoy small plates of their fine dining in the cigar lounge. If you’re in Vegas for a convention they offer Happy Hour all night (!). The steak frites is a perfect snack to share with a friend if you just want something to hold you over before a late dinner.
You can smoke a cigar anywhere you want but the fumes bother some people so it’s always nice to smoke it where you aren’t bothering anybody. Petrossian Bar at Bellagio is a great place to get a great drink and smoke that’s outside of the cigar lounges. Petrossian Bar is open to the huge Bellagio lobby so the smoke from the cigars has a lot of room to escape. The bar makes one of the best mixed drinks you’ll have anywhere on the strip (heavy but not disgusting pours) and if you prefer scotch they have a nice variety from a simple Jack Daniels to a limited edition Balvenie. The environment at Petrossian is perfect for a nice relaxed drink and smoke and is helped out by a variety of pianists playing some of your favorite songs from classics to some of today’s hits.
Yes, you can smoke a cigar anywhere but you won’t always have access to fine spirits like a limited edition Glenfiddich. A good drink and a great cigar is a great way to end a night or a great way to relax in-between the chaos of Las Vegas.
Marc Meltzer covers Las Vegas, gaming and men’s lifestyle for various outlets. Check out his blog at Edge Vegas.