Category Archives: Vital Vegas Podcast

Podcast: “Absinthe” Producer, Circa Owner, Resorts World’s Restaurants

What an incredible time to be alive. While “reading things in a blog” can be useful, through the technological miracle of podcasting, we can also “have word sounds shoved into our earholes!”

In that spirit, episode 120 of the Vital Vegas podcast is live!

The show features an in-depth chat with the producer (he prefers “Impresario Extraordinaire”) of “Absinthe,” Ross Mollison.

Ross Mollison

Producer Ross Mollison, pre-pandemic. Currently, he’s quarantined in Australia, but still suitably sassy.

“Absinthe” recently reopened (again) at Caesars Palace, and Mollison’s other Vegas shows, “Opium” at Cosmo and “Atomic Saloon” at Venetian, will be back soon.

Also on the show, Circa owner Derek Stevens talks about the sale of VSiN (Vegas Stats & Information Network) to DraftKings.

VSiN

We do not know what a “DraftKings” is, but it’s a great time for them to revamp the name of VSiN. And to add a space to Draft Kings while they’re at it.

Financial details of the deal haven’t been made public, but insiders share Stevens reportedly got $6 million in DraftKings stock for his $1 million investment (a 10 percent stake) in ViSN. Unconfirmed, but let’s just say he doesn’t seem too broken up about the deal. (The VSiN studio at Circa, pictured above, isn’t going anywhere. There’s another one at South Point.)

As if that weren’t enough exclusive rum for your Las Vegas daiquiri, we’ve also got the scoop about Resorts World’s incredible line-up of restaurants.

You also won’t want to miss our “Top 20 Nicknames for Las Vegas Bartenders.” You know, the things people call bartenders when they step up to the bar.

On second thought, let’s just list them, already.

Top 20 things Las Vegas bartenders are called when someone steps up to a casino bar:

  1. Buddy
  2. Guy
  3. Pal
  4. Boss
  5. Sir
  6. Dude
  7. Bro
  8. Homie
  9. Man
  10. Sport
  11. Dawg
  12. Barkeep
  13. Bub
  14. Bud
  15. Champ
  16. Partner
  17. Hoss
  18. Bubba
  19. Chief
  20. Hero (mainly used by us)

Yes, these are mostly used for male bartenders, but that’s because: 1) Casino bartenders are mostly male, 2) We don’t want to encourage sexist terms like “babe,” “honey” and “sweetie.”

Of course, the show is full of useful nuggets and inside scoop you won’t find anywhere else. That’s just how we roll. And by “roll,” of course, we mean “ramble.”

Bonus: We finally figured out which side of the microphone we’re supposed to talk into. Miracles happen!

Speaking of miracles, we’ll also regale you with our night of big video poker wins, including a royal flush and $4,000 hand pay for four aces with a “kicker.”

Hand pay Circa

Some people look at porn. We look at this.

There’s so much Vegas, you’ll need an expandable waistband.

Let the unmitigated disappointment begin!

Vital Vegas Podcast: The Rebound, Omega Mart, Casino Bosses and More

Our latest podcast episode is live, and it’s guaranteed to be 10 percent less yawnfest than any episode we’ve done in the past month!

We start with news about the Las Vegas rebound. Yes, that’s a March Madness reference. Even the things we’re bad at we’re excellent at. Including ending sentences with prepositions.

In this episode, we take you into the twisted bowels of Omega Mart, from art collective Meow Wolf, the best non-casino thing to happen to Las Vegas since edible underwear.

We chat with Drew DiCostanzo, the head of marketing for Omega Mart, and the only person we’ve talked to who can sort of explain what Omega Mart is. Sort of.

Omega Mart nuts

Omega Mart is nuts. Or is it?

Next up, we interview casino mogul Derek Stevens about the new Circa sportsbook at Tuscany.

Yes, more sports. It’s called “pandering,” you’ll get over it.

Derek Stevens Tuscany

They get a group interview, we get an exclusive one-on-one. That’s how we roll.

We’ll also get the lowdown on the closure of the Greyhound bus station at Plaza from the casino’s CEO, Jonathan Jossel.

The bottom line: It’s a lot more than a bus station relocating. You might say it’s a new lease on life for the neighborhood.

Greyhound station Plaza

Adios, trouble maker.

We’ve also got a slightly intoxicated interview with Chef Steve at Circa’s 8 East restaurant. Chef Steve feeds us at least three times a week, so we thought he should get a little air time.

Honestly, Chef Steve and the crew at 8 East do what is currently our favorite dish in Las Vegas, the brisket fried rice “Vital Vegas-style” (chicken skewers added, hold the sticks).

8 East fried rice

No, haters, we’ve never gotten free food at 8 East, we just love it. And if you hate us so much, why are you reading our blog? You’re lame.

This episode of the podcast is stuffed to the gills with insider scoop, perfunctory news, rumors and speculation and old-timey phrases like “stuffed to the gills.”

You don’t have to listen, but you also don’t have to drink, gamble or fornicate, and what the hell kind of life would that be?

Let’s be honest, it’s more news and entertainment than you really deserve, but we’re magnanimous like that. Listen up and get your Vegas fix, already.

Podcast: Pinball Trouble, Virginity Delayed and a Metric Buttload of Vegas News

It’s time to stuff your earholes with some Las Vegas news and scoop with episode 118 of the Vital Vegas Podcast.

Yes, there’s a Vital Vegas podcast. Not everyone’s a reader like you, nerd.

Vital Vegas Podcast

We spent $40 for this logo on Fiverr, so we’re damn well going to get some use out of it.

In this installment, we chat up Tim Arnold of the Pinball Hall of Fame.

The Pinball Hall of Fame has come up short on funds to finish its new location on the Las Vegas Strip thanks to the pandemic, and Arnold is asking for help to avoid the project being derailed.

Tim Arnold Pinball Hall of Fame

Tim Arnold and his merry band of volunteers could end up in limbo without our help.

Also, you’ll be privy to the inside track on Virgin’s delayed opening date and lots of other insights from CEO Richard Bosworth.

Bosworth shares exclusive details about when Virgin might open, and the challenges being faced trying to open during a surreal time.

Virgin rendering

This recent Virgin Las Vegas rendering puts us in the mood to chillax or whatever people are doing now.

We also review Eiffel Tower restaurant at Paris and drone on endlessly about how much we love 8 East at Circa and Al Solito Posto at Tivoli Village.

Naturally, we blaze through a cavalcade of Las Vegas news. The printed version of Gaming Today magazine ends Feb. 10, CSI: The Experience has closed permanently at MGM Grand, Elio at Wynn has closed and the next iteration will get an injection of restaurateur Elizabeth Blau, chef Hubert Keller out at Mandalay Bay, Lady Godiva is closing up shop in Vegas and the mall in Primm has been sold for $1.5 million (not a typo).

You’ll also hear our response to the constant badgering about us running for Nevada Governor. Here’s our platform!

1) Bring the lottery to Nevada.
2) Tax the mining industry more.
3) Tax the casino industry more.
4) Legalize prostitution.
5) Ban paper straws.
6) Everyone gets a royal flush.
7) Ban scooters.
8) Ban cigars.
9) Make Las Vegas “toptional.”
10) Top Dollar offer transparency.
11) More sports! (Also known as pandering.)

Do we even need to campaign?

Take a listen and get your Vegas fix, zero calories, gluten or hidden fees!

Vital Vegas Podcast, Ep. 117: Circa Movers and Shakers, Vegas Gets Weirder and More

You’ll be thrilled and mortified to hear we’ve changed our “every few months” podcasting schedule to “whenever we feel like it,” so get ready for our latest cochleafest.

Related: How is there not a Cochleafest? Seriously.

This marks the second episode where we get all up inside Circa, the newest Las Vegas casino that opened Oct. 28, 2020.

This time, we get interviews from a slew of the people responsible for making Circa a reality, including Jeff Victor, Vice President of Operations for the new resort. Victor was instrumental in the return of Vegas Vickie to Circa, and was the former President of Fremont Street Experience. As an added bonus, David Rosborough, who also holds the title of Vice President of Operations, pops in for a quick word about Circa’s unique culture.

Jeff Victor Circa

Fun fact: While he was President of Fremont Street Experience President, Jeff Victor presided over a renewal ceremony for Vegas Vic and Vegas Vickie.

But wait, there’s more. We also have exclusive interviews with all the players involved in Circa’s five restaurants.

That’s right, we’ve got the teams behind 8 East, Barry’s Downtown Prime, Saginaw’s Deli, Victory Burger & Wings and Project BBQ.

8 East Circa

We were never a pork belly person, but we bao before 8 East at Circa, the best new Las Vegas restaurant of 2020.

Damn right, you’ll get our takes on all these new offerings, because we are physically incapable of not opining. Get used to it.

We’ll also do a check-in with Ross Mollison, producer of “Absinthe,” as the show navigates these challenging times.

Speaking of challenges, we’ve got the latest on the recent mandates from Governor Steve Sisolak, including venues (including casinos) being restricted to 25% occupancy.

Heads up: For the next three weeks, reservations are required at Las Vegas restaurants. Hey, who needs a vaccine when we’ve got Open Table?

Naturally, we’ve got a metric ass-ton of Las Vegas news, including the skinny about the opening of Tailgate Social at Palace Station, Lucky’s departure from O’Sheas, Donny Osmond’s solo residency at Harrah’s, the cancellation of New Year’s Eve fireworks on The Strip, Shakira’s new light show at Fremont Street Experience and more.

To round out our ode to Circa, our “Listicle of the Week” is “11 Things You Have to Do at Circa,” at least six of which involve Vegas Vickie.

Vegas Vickie

Not just a photo op at Circa, the photo op at Circa.

While you don’t have to listen to our podcast, we promise if you do, 1) you’ll never experience male pattern baldness, 2) an angel will get its wings, 3) guaranteed handpay the next time you visit Las Vegas, even if you don’t play a slot machine.

Actual results may vary.

Here’s the latest drivel, so have at it.

Vital Vegas Podcast Ep. 116: Circa Owners, Vegas Vickie’s Enhancements and More

It’s a celebratory installment of the podcast you probably didn’t even know exists!

In this episode, we continue our victory lap for the walloping we gave Sahara and its baseless lawsuit. We’re pretty sure the gloating will subside by episode 200, should that ever be a thing.

The big “get” in this episode, though, is a pair of interviews with the co-owners of the shiny new Circa Las Vegas.

Derek and Greg Stevens generously share exclusive details about their new downtown Las Vegas casino that’s generated lots of buzz since it opened Oct. 28, 2020.

Derek Stevens slot machine

Circa owner Derek Stevens got to play on his video poker machines during the casino’s employee play dates.

While we’ve had Derek Stevens on the podcast frequently, this is the first in-depth interview we’ve done with his brother Greg Stevens.

Greg Stevens takes us behind-the-scenes with insights into Circa’s innovative ventilation system, beer delivery technology and even the “science of water” used to amp up Circa’s pools.

Fun fact: Circa pumps CO2 into its pools. It helps make the water a little bluer and sparkly. It also aids in maintaining the pH balance.

Circa Greg Stevens

Co-owner Greg Stevens got the star treatment on opening night of Circa.

But wait, there’s more!

This first part of a Circa two-parter has an enlightening conversation with Rick Juleen, V.P. of Business Development for YESCO, the Las Vegas sign company tasked with restoring the iconic Vegas Vickie.

Vegas Vickie is the attention-grabbing centerpiece of Circa, and Juleen talks about how she was overhauled for her return to Fremont Street.

Vegas Vickie

Welcome back, you tall glass of noble gas, you.

We even got some serious scoop, confirmation of Vickie’s rumored “enhancements,” so check it out.

Our next episode will feature conversations with all the folks involved with Circa’s restaurants, as well as a chat with Jeff Victor and David Rosborough, two Vice Presidents of Circa, each of whom have been key figures in the development of this new downtown destination.

In an upcoming episode, we’ll also chat with Alice Little, the sex worker who is suing Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak for refusing to reopen Nevada’s brothels.

Yes, we understand you care more about hearing from a sex worker than Circa executives, but patience is a virtue, freak.

Here’s the latest episode of the Vital Vegas podcast!

Vital Vegas Podcast, Ep. 115: Scoop, Sports and Superabundant Suckery

What the hell is happening in Las Vegas?

First, please watch the language.

Second, we’ve got this!

It’s another installment of the podcast guaranteed to satisfy your insatiable cravings for all things WTF.

For starters, we’ve got some incisive (your results may vary) commentary about Area 15 and Bugsy & Meyer’s Steakhouse at Flamingo. Spoiler alert: Love them.

Oddwood Area 15

Oddwood Lounge is at the heart of Area 15, a new mall we haven’t figured out how to describe yet, but we quite enjoyed it, anyway.

In this show, we chat with Howard Barish, Managing Editor and General Manager of Gaming Today magazine. Gaming Today has been around 45 years, so they sort of have the sports betting thing down.

That’s right, it’s a sports thing. On our podcast. You know what they say: If you can’t beat ’em, let a sports guy talk about sports so we don’t have to! Barish shares his thoughts on “music, sex and sports,” but mostly that last thing.

Naturally, we give our two 0.0000017 Bitcoin (yes, that’s two cents as we write this) about Bizarro Vegas. You know, the one where Cosmopolitan and Wynn and The D and others are increasing security because of a spike in boneheads visiting Las Vegas recently.

Cosmo

On the bright side, irksome security measures at Cosmo only make it five percent less awesome.

Our “Listicle of the Week” features some sadness, specifically, “Nine Las Vegas Casinos That Are Still Closed.” In case you have a podcast allergy, and we wouldn’t blame you, here’s the list.

The Las Vegas casinos still closed are: Cromwell, Palms, Rio, Main Street Station (Downtown), Fiesta Rancho (North Las Vegas), Texas Station (North Las Vegas), Fiesta Henderson (Henderson), Eldorado Casino (Henderson) and Eastside Cannery (Boulder Highway).

Otherwise, it’s the usual rambling drivel you’ve come to know and avoid.

Gird your eustachian tube and take a listen.