Trader Vics A Cultural Icon
Establishment: Planet Hollywood - Miracle Mile Shop
Published: July 1, 2008
Photos By: Robin Roth
Story By: Robin Roth
Editor: Mark Lewis

Trader Vic’s, located at the Miracle Mile Shops inside Planet Hollywood has been re-invented for Las Vegas and is unlike any of the other Trader Vic’s found in the states. With its new restaurant design of easy, comfortable elegance and new Island-inspired, Euro-Asian-Polynesian cuisine, it has proven to be a smash sensation. Don’t worry, faithful fans of this legendary restaurant, you will still find the Trader’s famous award-winning dishes and still experience world-famous “shared” cocktails and yes, better than ever. Trader Vic's is the brand of American hospitality, filled with Island style service and an atmosphere that is a worry-free place for customers to escape into a world of the highest culinary quality and consistency. It is FUSION of Polynesian, Chinese and all things South Pacific, a celebration of food. 

There are three separate dining and entertainment venues featuring a ground-level restaurant and Strip-side patio that opens onto Las Vegas Boulevard and a second-level Tiki Club-ultra lounge, both providing customers with panoramic views of the Bellagio Fountains, the Eiffel Tower and City Center.

For countless years, there was just no place as great, happening, or cool as Trader Vic’s, Beverly Hills . Every movie-star, and rock-star who was anybody, dined there. You could hardly enjoy a meal without spotting someone famous. Dressing for dinner was always “in” at Trader Vic’s in Beverly Hills. Regular diners included Elizabeth Taylor and Whoopi Goldberg, who had a standing reservation on Sunday nights. She often brought her mother. Tom Hanks had a regular table and could usually be seen in a huddle with someone like Martin Short. There are so many who hung out here that it might well be easier to list the celebrities that have not been to and loved this restaurant. On Sunday nights especially, it was packed with celebrities. Sadly, this ROCKIN LANDMARK, Trader Vic’s recently closed.
However, the endless number of loyal Trader Vic’s fans will completely enjoy the Las Vegas restaurant as much as, and recreate the fond memories they made and experienced in the landmark Beverly Hills Trader Vic’s. The Las Vegas location will carry on the legacy of the Trader, as diners share it with new and old friends alike from around the world.
Vic "The Trader" Bergeron's success started in 1934 with his first legendary restaurant  has gained international acclaim by his ability to cultivate affluent, customers intrigued by his uncanny knack for introducing unique foods, vigilant preparation and for his 1944 invention of the original now famous  Mai Tai, as well as other  exotic crowd pleasing drinks. Since 1934 Trader Vic's has been dedicated to preparing only the freshest meals with the finest ingredients from around the world. He was the pioneer of fusion cuisine, (ISLAND-EURO-ASIAN-POLYNESIAN) introducing ingredients that provided his signature menus and emphasis on service.

The menu reflects a unique ability to capture the best of many cuisines. Because of their world-famous Chinese wood-fired ovens, meat, fish, and fowl are slowly roasted to perfection in the true 'roti' tradition. No foods from wok dishes, to American classics are ever exposed to an open flame.

All that said, I must tell you (because I am so excited) about some of the dishes that are a must at Trader Vic’s. Start with their amazing pineapple bread and add some of their homemade peanut butter, to die for. Save room though.                                                 

For starters: you must try at least four, or five or six (OK SEVEN IS FINE TOO!)          I recommend the tasty, crispy prawns, the delectable falling off the bone BBQ pork spareribs, the out of this world tender BBQ Kobe short ribs and the sinful lobster har gaw (dumplings).

For the main courses:  You cannot go wrong with anything on the menu. The flavors that are cooked into the foods are irresistible and brilliant. The presentation is also fantastic and lovely to look at. I nevertheless, must brag about the ones I devoured. An absolute “no brainer”, is the Trader Vic’s “all in” fried rice…. Don’t ask, just order it. Next, the Miso orange Sea Bass is a taste of heaven and melts in your mouth… period. The King Salmon was tremendous, tasty, delicate, and cooked to perfection. The domestic lamb chops were sensational and tender as can be. I also, shamefully attacked the Cantonese lobster. OK, yes, I over indulged, but it was worth every calorie! Even my stellar server, Robert Gaines, as handsome and stunning as he was, wondered when I would put down my fork…Just kidding Robert, you were great.

Don’t forget, by all means, to enjoy a few of their famous, original, exotic, drinks.

For dessert: You are on your own. You can’t make a mistake here.

The service is stupendous. You never have to want for anything. It is the goal at Trader Vic’s, to make sure everyone has the best, most unforgettable, dining experience, and they truly succeed.

I must also, tell you about the man who makes this restaurant a classic, Mike Emizawa. He is the extraordinarily charming, delightful, classy, and an abundantly experienced maitre d’. His joy and aspiration is to see you eating happily, having fun, and smiling in his restaurant. I never met anyone as kind and caring as Mike. He is a true gentleman. You won’t forget to say hi to him, because he will no doubt greet you first. He has proudly been with the company for 43 years and has had pleasure working in many of the restaurants all over the world with joy and pride. He is a shining star for Trader Vic’s.

“Part of the magic of Trader Vic’s is its ability to temporarily transport our customers to far distant and imaginary shores,” said Bill Tremper, Vice President of Operations of DW Enterprises. “If you’re visiting Las Vegas you can take a vacation within a vacation and indulge upon the food, service, escapist ambience that is uniquely Trader Vic’s,” Tremper added. Trader Vic’s reputation as a sophisticated yet layback, totally fun and affordable dining experience is perfect for tourists as well as the Las Vegas locals.

Some other locations around the world include: Atlanta, Georgia U.S.A., Emeryville, California, U.S.A., Palo Alto, California, U.S.A.,
San Francisco, California, U.S.A., Bellevue, Washington, U.S.A., Manama, Bahrain,
London, England, Berlin, Germany, Hamburg, Germany, Munich, Germany, Osaka, Japan, Tokyo, Japan, Beirut, Lebanon, Muscat, Oman, Marbella, Spain,
Taipei, Taiwan, Bangkok, Thailand, Abu Dhabi, U.A.E., Al Ain, U.A.E. Dubai Crowne Plaza, U.A.E.,  and Dubai Souk Madinat, U.A.E.
Hours of operation are: Breakfast 8am to 11 am- Lunch, 11 to 4 pm- Dinner 4-12 am
7 days….
P.S: Do stay after dinner and go upstairs to the L.A. Comedy Club for some laughs…
ENJOY; treat yourself to one of your most memorable dining experiences AND TELL THEM ROBIN SENT YOU!

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