Fergalicious, bubbilicious, make them boys go crazy…. Wait, wait, that’s not how this blog starts. Chrissy and I headed to Vegas for UNLVino, a charity event to raise scholarship money for UNLV. My aunt’s boss, Larry Ruvo, is the head of Southern Wine and Spirits, who puts on the event each year, and there are three nights of wine, sake, and champagne tastings with food samples from local restaurants as well. The price per ticket is usually $100-125, depending on which night you want to attend, but it’s for a good cause. Bubblicious is the first event of the week, usually on a Thursday night, and it’s held at the Venetian, outside over the gondola canals.
Chrissy and I started getting ready around 5, because we wanted to hit up one of the hotel restaurants for happy hour beforehand for a bite to eat and a drink. We were staying at the Palazzo, which is fantastic because it’s all suites. Our two queen bed suite was on the 49th floor (the top is the 50th) overlooking the Wynn and the golf course. It was amazing! We headed down to the lobby just before 6 and walked to the restaurant db Brasserie, that we read had a good happy hour in the Grand Canal Shoppes, which connect the Palazzo and the Venetian. Unfortunately, everyone else seemed to have the same idea and there weren’t any spots in the bar/lounge area. We walked over to the food court and grabbed a quick sandwich while we waited for my cousin Christin, her husband Darrin and my friend Olojia. Then we made our way outside at 7 for the start of Bubblicious.
We showed our IDs to get our wristbands and made our way into the crowd. Luckily, we arrived right when they started so it wasn’t too busy yet. The first few booths had some delicious champagnes- we were all big fans of a sparkling red called Fizz, and we all were dying over an ahi poke with avocado, as well as veggie and hummus hordeourves. Chrissy tried a chilled pea soup that was very tasty. We rounded the first corner and had an amazing bruschetta with cheese, peas, asparagus, and edamame, oddly good! There are always the traditional champagnes like Moet Hennessey and Veuve Clicquot, as well as newer brands such as Myx and Stella Rosa. There was a large variety of desserts as well, from red velvet cakes to chocolate cupcakes and a pineapple and tapioca pudding. There were so many yummy champagnes to choose from, including my new favorite, a Cupcake prosecco. We kept going back to that booth, as well as the Stella Rosa, and Chrissy and Darrin really loved a Spanish Brut, but the popular champagnes ran out quickly.
Midway through the evening, a voice came over the microphone to thank everyone for coming and to introduce Larry Ruvo. I thought the voice sounded familiar, and as I peeked around the crowd, I realized it was Robin Leach, the voice behind “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous!” After Larry’s speech, a great Beatles cover band came on, and they were fantastic. We’ve never stayed and listened to the music before because the bands haven’t been the best, but this group was wonderful. They played all of the greatest hits, and we had a front row spot! The Cupcake booth was nearby, so we kept running back for a refill between songs. Olojia and I wanted to go back and get one more taste of “Fizz,” but when we got there, they were already out. As I turned around to walk back to the band, I saw Robin Leach right behind me! Christin and Olojia walked up to him and asked if we could get a photo with him, and although he pretty rudely said, “yes, but hurry up,” we were still happy. We caught the last few Beatles tunes and then headed out into the night, with a little buzz from a great evening.
Bubblicious is my favorite night of UNLVino, mainly because they offer the most options drink-wise (except for the Grand Tasting, which has 200 wine vendors but is a madhouse so we don’t go anymore). I enjoy champagnes and they have a wide variety, including lots of sweet ones and new sparkling reds. The venue can be a little crowded since the paths over the canals aren’t very wide, so you get stuck in one spot once the event gets busy. Bubblicious is also a little fancier than sake fever, so Chrissy and I both wore heels, but brought flats which we quickly switched into after about an hour- lifesaver! UNLVino raises money for a great local cause, and it’s definitely something I enjoy coming out to Vegas for every year. If you want to know how you can attend or contribute, check out their website here.