3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV | Directions 8910936.119557 -115.173337
Walking through Caesar's, we nearly bumped into a gaggle of Midwestern tourists as we all ogled this deep, dark chocolate cafe. Get a fancy French dessert like the passion fruit tart, or get the chewy flourless chocolate cookie and a hot chocolate to dip it in, or get one of everything (remember, there's no such thing as excess in Las Vegas).
The Tiniest Most Expensive Chocolate You Will Ever Eat – I discovered the Payard website by accident and since then I have wanted to try their chocolates, which seem like they should be excellent. They are made on site with recipes from France, it doesn't get any better right? I am no stranger to gourmet chocolate and their website has grand descriptions and apparently very enlarged photos which make you envision regular size boxes of chocolate similar to Godiva. The website pointedly omits the weight of each box of chocolate or other products. So, when I went to Las Vegas last week, I made it a point to go to Payard to pick up some chocolate and bring it home. I asked for the Masterpiece II box, knowing that it comes with 48 pieces of chocolate for $50. When the woman put the box on the counter, I was sure she made a mistake. It was an 8 by 5 inch box, there was no way 48 normal pieces of chocolate could fit in there even in double row. She said there was no mistake. I was dumbfounded but determined to investigate this further. I also bought 2 chocolate bars and an assortment of rochers, which seem to be similar to chocolate covered rice crispies. All of this cost almost $100 and it was literally less than 2 pounds of product. I can't say exactly, because there are no weights, even on the boxes. I think they too must realize the ridiculousness of what they are selling, becuase they put everything in a comically large gift bag. I came home and discovered that their small chocolate bar ($8) tastes no better than say Godiva or some other chocolate that is half the price for more product. Their masterpiece box was so tiny because each of their chocolates is 1/3 if not one quarter the size of any normal gourmet chocolate. Again, the taste was very similar to Godiva. It tasted fresher, simply because it hasn't traveled here all the way from another country and then made to sit on a store shelf, not because it's better tasting chocolate. I checked the ingredients, there isn't any more chocolate in this recipe that would justify such comically small chocolate at an enormous price. It's the same essential ingredients, sugar, creme etc. They don't use any rare or expensive ingredients either. I am used to paying $2-$3 a piece for boutique chocolates, but these are normal size chocolates not 1/3 of normal. Also, I can safely say that I have tasted chocolate that is much better than this again at a price that doesn't come to $50 per pound. This is a ripoff plain and simple and also ridiculous. I would be ashamed to serve this "masterpiece" box to any guest, because they would think I am some kind of miser for buying such a small box with chocolate bites in it, not actual chocolates. I worry about the person who is considering their favor boxes. It's almost addictive, because you eat 1 or 2 and it's such a small piece that you are never satisfied by it. In short, until this place chooses to sell chocolate by the pound, just like any normal chocolate place that is confidant in their product, or they change their comically small bites I am never shopping here again. I see no reason to, because I can get much better chocolate for a half the price and I don't have to go through any embarrassment in serving this chocolate to others.
Award-winning French pastry chef Francois Payard has built a chocolate palace (fit for a Caesar) at Caesars. – In Short
Payard's is a pastry shop, a gourmet chocolate store and bistro rolled into one. The Pâtisserie, which includes a dining room with dark wood tables and creamy white-leather banquettes, serves French-inspired breakfast and lunch items such as vegetable quiche, eggs Florentine, sweet banana crepes and sandwiches like Croque Monsieur. Payard's also has coffee drinks and homemade ice cream and sorbets in an array of rotating flavors including chocolate, vanilla, mango/passion fruit, strawberry and coconut.
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