Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Shark Fin Soup In Las Vegas, Los Angeles


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 20 July 2007 - 05:11 PM

Was in Las Vegas and went into a place in one of the hotels to get some food.

They had two bowls of shark fin soup on the menu, a $68 and $128 dollar version of it.

Needless to say I was upset and mentioned it to the other people at the table and filled them in about the subject.

Spoke with the manager and mentioned that having it on the menu is wrong. He was polite about it, but said that due to the wide variety of customers in Las Vegas it needs to be on the menu and it was a conscious decision to do so.

:D


Worth keeping an eye out for if anyone goes there, perhaps if enough people mention this when they walk in to the various restaurants maybe something can be changed, though I doubt it. One of those things where it is rather daunting, I am going to write a letter anyway.

Shawn, BTW if you see this post I wanted to know if there is a link to your video? I want to pass it on to some people and/or perhaps forward the Podcast if it is okay with you and Mary Lynn for those who may not be quite up on getting things from the perspective of downloads or Podcasts.

#2 ulcs

ulcs

    Wolf Eel

  • Industry
  • PipPip
  • 147 posts

Posted 22 July 2007 - 03:22 PM

what resturant and what hotel. Will boycott that place
Terry

#3 segal3

segal3

    Powerful Sea Gull

  • Admin
  • 1739 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Los Angeles, CA

Posted 22 July 2007 - 04:16 PM

There are quite a few in Los Angeles as well, apparently.

This may have been posted before, but the Animal Welfare Institute has published a list of LA restaurants that allegedly serve shark fin - http://www.awionline...ark-finsoup.htm.
Matt Segal - carbonos scuba

#4 shawnh

shawnh

    Shawk Man

  • Senior Moderator
  • 1398 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Boulder, CO
  • Interests:UW Video, UW Photography Diving, Telemark Skiing, Cycling, Travel

Posted 22 July 2007 - 07:13 PM

Shawn, BTW if you see this post I wanted to know if there is a link to your video? I want to pass it on to some people and/or perhaps forward the Podcast if it is okay with you and Mary Lynn for those who may not be quite up on getting things from the perspective of downloads or Podcasts.


Drew, very dissappointing. I guess with as much time I spend in Asia, shark fin on the menu never surprises me :) By all means forward this link on to others.

http://www.bluespher...nservation.html
Canon 5D MII - Aquatica Housing - Sola 4000 Lights - Wahoo HD Monitor & Sony EX1 - Gates EX1 Housing - Fathoms UWA Lens
www.bluespheremedia.com

#5 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 23 July 2007 - 01:15 PM

what resturant and what hotel. Will boycott that place
Terry


It was called Asian Food (or something like that) in The Venitian - it is directly across from the Sports Book.

Interestingly enough they (The Ventian which seems part of The Sands) do mention being concerned and active in trying to do the right thing on their website in various matters.

Perhaps this is something that they will address if enough people bring it to the attention of those who can change the situation, and if they do so would make the place I would try to get to since they stepped up to take care of the issue.

My guess it is probably more common than not in Las Vegas since people are coming from all over the world, I had just not noticed it before.


Drew, very dissappointing. I guess with as much time I spend in Asia, shark fin on the menu never surprises me :) By all means forward this link on to others.



Shawn, thanks. Will pass it on to some people - I had mentioned that I had a friend (was easier to refer to you that way than some dude on some board who I post with often and seems like a real good guy :) ) who made a powerful piece on the subject that they should see to show what I was talking about

#6 Drew

Drew

    The Controller

  • Video Expert
  • 10635 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:GPS is not reliable in South East Asian seas

Posted 05 August 2007 - 12:27 PM

Drew
The reality is that the asian market in vegas is too big to ignore. And unfortunately that means they will cater to the rich asian clientele, who demand shark fin as part of their noveau riche menu.
Does the Venetian (Sands Entertainment) care about the shark? Not if they care about the bottom line.
Anyhow all of the chinese restaurants in Vegas suck anyhow.

Matt that list of restaurants is so small. There are at least 10 restaurants in Alhambra alone serving sharksfin that I've been over the years. There are more in Monterey Park and vicinity.

Even one of the thai restaurants in Hollywood serve it.

Drew
Moderator
"Journalism is what someone else does not want printed, everything else is public relations."

"I was born not knowing, and have only had a little time to change that here and there.


#7 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 05 August 2007 - 03:13 PM

The reality is that the asian market in vegas is too big to ignore. And unfortunately that means they will cater to the rich asian clientele, who demand shark fin as part of their noveau riche menu.
Does the Venetian (Sands Entertainment) care about the shark?


Yup exactly what he said - the asian clients expect it.

As an aside did you catch any of the Shark Week on Discovery? Some of the shows were so-so, some were good and there was sequence in one of the shows that was very well done (disturbing) of a finned sharked sinking to the bottom.

#8 Giles

Giles

    International Supermodel

  • Moderator
  • 2618 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Cayman Islands
  • Interests:water and sun my friend, thats what turns me on.

Posted 06 August 2007 - 06:25 AM

Yeh i Agree on the Shark week thing.

The so so stuff was mostly all recycled stories from previous years .. like the man getting his calf bitten by that shark .. etc etc .. but the new stuff was quite good .. even if a lot of it still slanted at them being killers .. at least they tried to even it up.
me on the web >> journal / flickr / portfolio
i use >> my camera, eye & stunning good looks

#9 Bruce Zavon

Bruce Zavon

    Damselfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 18 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bonaire!

Posted 23 January 2008 - 10:02 AM

I was recently in Las Vegas and had a chance to stay at the newly opened Palazzo Hotel. There is an Asian Restaurant on the casino floor called Jade, and we decided to try it out. I was shocked to see that they served Shark Fin Soup, given what we all know about the destruction of this creature. :) :P I spoke with the manager, told him how upsetting this would be to many people, and asked that he remove the item from the menu, but he said it was a corporate decision and that the restaurant is owned by Venetian/Palazzo. So I've sent emails to them but have heard nothing back, and now I'm publicizing this on scuba diving boards. Palazzo is a part of the Las Vegas Sands Corp. group of casinos and I'd bet they serve Shark FIn Soup in Macao and will in Singapore too. It's a public company (LVS) and maybe like Disney they'll respond to public pressure.

This has got to stop; it's bad enough it's an established part of some cultures but to bring it to the Strip gives it a novelty flair and it's just that many more thoughtless people who will cause that much more thoughtless killing. Here's the emails I could find, you might come up with additional contacts so post them here. And while I hope it's gone soon, DEMA is in Vegas this Fall. Maybe a little personal visit/publicity/picketing might be helpful?

foodandbeverage@palazzolasvegas.com

comments@palazzolasvegas.com

Corporate contact:

http://phx.corporate...;p=irol-infoReq

Edited by Bruce Zavon, 23 January 2008 - 10:09 AM.


#10 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 23 January 2008 - 10:30 AM

I was recently in Las Vegas and had a chance to stay at the newly opened Palazzo Hotel. There is an Asian Restaurant on the casino floor called Jade, and we decided to try it out. I was shocked to see that they served Shark Fin Soup, given what we all know about the destruction of this creature. :) :P I spoke with the manager, told him how upsetting this would be to many people, and asked that he remove the item from the menu, but he said it was a corporate decision and that the restaurant is owned by Venetian/Palazzo. So I've sent emails to them but have heard nothing back, and now I'm publicizing this on scuba diving boards. Palazzo is a part of the Las Vegas Sands Corp. group of casinos and I'd bet they serve Shark FIn Soup in Macao and will in Singapore too. It's a public company (LVS) and maybe like Disney they'll respond to public pressure.

This has got to stop; it's bad enough it's an established part of some cultures but to bring it to the Strip gives it a novelty flair and it's just that many more thoughtless people who will cause that much more thoughtless killing. Here's the emails I could find, you might come up with additional contacts so post them here. And while I hope it's gone soon, DEMA is in Vegas this Fall. Maybe a little personal visit/publicity/picketing might be helpful?

foodandbeverage@palazzolasvegas.com

comments@palazzolasvegas.com

Corporate contact:

http://phx.corporate...;p=irol-infoReq


Yup it is an issue. Good disscusssion here

http://wetpixel.com/...mp;hl=shark fin

#11 paradicio

paradicio

    Sea Nettle

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 14 posts

Posted 23 January 2008 - 04:01 PM

Sick. I've sent messages to the hotel as well as a few marine conservation agencies.

#12 Bruce Zavon

Bruce Zavon

    Damselfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 18 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bonaire!

Posted 24 January 2008 - 03:20 PM

Sick. I've sent messages to the hotel as well as a few marine conservation agencies.


I think it's much worse than I knew. I borrowed this list from DocVikingo's post on Scubadiving.com. Only solution is going to be legal action in terms of making it ilegal to sell in the US, I'm afraid. I don't think one will risk losing a client to another to save a shark. Greed sucks.

Orchid Asian Cuisine -- The Venetian (under Soups)
http://www.venetian....rchid_asian.pdf

Jasmine - The Bellagio (Jasmine; click on menu, click on Cantonese Classics)
http://www.bellagio....ts/jasmine.aspx

Empress Court - Caesars Palace
http://www.harrahs.c...ourt_060605.pdf

Dynasty - Trump Taj Mahal
http://www.trumptaj....6-a768ca2a70f9/

#13 Bruce Zavon

Bruce Zavon

    Damselfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 18 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bonaire!

Posted 30 January 2008 - 10:58 AM

Good news!! This from the DDN board :) :(

Quote:

Thank you for your email. We appreciate your feedback and want you to
know we have removed shark fin soup from our menu.

Erin Robbins
Executive Secretary to Pete Boyd, Vice President of Food & Beverage
Phone: 702.414.0323 | Fax: 702.414.1301
erin.robbins@venetian.com

#14 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 30 January 2008 - 11:10 AM

Good news!! This from the DDN board :) :(

Quote:

Thank you for your email. We appreciate your feedback and want you to
know we have removed shark fin soup from our menu.

Erin Robbins
Executive Secretary to Pete Boyd, Vice President of Food & Beverage
Phone: 702.414.0323 | Fax: 702.414.1301
erin.robbins@venetian.com


Wow. That is tremendous news and I am VERY pleasantly suprised they did that in light of everything else discussed in this thread. Thanks so much for the info. My brother and I mentioned the issue last year when we were there to the manager and sometimes you think it is just spitting into the wind.

EDIT TO ADD:

I think something we should do is also thank people who step up to do the right thing. Going to their restaurant, staying at that hotel. Etc. Perhaps even a thank you from the members here or emails, or even a special mention on the front page in the same way when amazon pulled the shark fin. Of course we do not want to jam the in box up. Of course they had business reasons for making this decision, such as not alienating customers one way or the other to the eextent it may mean dollars and cents, but reinforcing positive actions cannot hurt :)

Edited by TheRealDrew, 30 January 2008 - 11:19 AM.


#15 DeanB

DeanB

    Humpback Whale

  • Industry
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3073 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:U.K

Posted 30 January 2008 - 12:21 PM

Hey i agree...

Its a postitve thing and if this helps then its a bonus...

Fantastic news all in all...

Dive safe

Dean(every little helps)B
Facebook me ;)
NOW ON SKYPE !!! ... deanb69
www.waterwolf-productions.co.uk

#16 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 30 January 2008 - 12:24 PM

Hey i agree...

Its a postitve thing and if this helps then its a bonus...

Fantastic news all in all...

Dive safe

Dean(every little helps)B



It really is. It is funny, these type of things always seem to show up at the right time. As I mentioned in the Canon/Whaling thread, it often feels like trying to get people to focus on these issues is hitting a brick wall and it is difficult sometimes not to be discouraged.

But then you realize that things can be done and continue pressing on.

#17 ebonites

ebonites

    Triggerfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:USA

Posted 30 January 2008 - 02:37 PM

Could someone in or visiting Vegas please confirm the serving of shark fin at Wynn Las Vegas' Wing Lei?

It doesn't appear on their downloaded menu for the Wing Lei restaurant through the Wynn Las Vegas site, yet Wing Lei and the Wynn's buffet is noted on the Animal Welfare Institute site under "Shark Fin Soup in the U.S."

Further probing indicates Wynn Las Vegas as serving shark fin soup at Wing Lei:
"...we also experienced bowls of the best shark's fin soup I have ever tasted"
- Max Jacobson, Las Vegas Life (taken from 2007 review from vegas.com).

Abroad, the Wynn Macau serves the shark dish in their signature restaurant also named Wing Lei.

This raises the possible issue of outfits such as Wynn Las Vegas deliberately not making online disclosure by omission. Upscale establishments such as these aren't blind to the negative PR this could bring within Western sensibilities.

In this instance, Steve Wynn's previous public stance on positive environmental practices could be leveraged for a renewed peek in the kitchen and a change of menu.

ebonites

#18 TheRealDrew

TheRealDrew

    Humpback Whale

  • Moderator
  • 2855 posts

Posted 30 January 2008 - 02:57 PM

This raises the possible issue of outfits such as Wynn Las Vegas deliberately not making online disclosure by omission. Upscale establishments such as these aren't blind to the negative PR this could bring within Western sensibilities.

In this instance, Steve Wynn's previous public stance on positive environmental practices could be leveraged for a renewed peek in the kitchen and a change of menu.

ebonites


Interesting. If you take a look at the whaling thread and Canon their are some points raised as to whether Canon should be vocal in their opposition to whaling where they otherwise bill themselves as being associated positively with protecting wildlife. Here there is someone is seems to bill themselves as having positive environmental practices but may be engaging in an activity that is contrary to the position.

Of course if you dig enough (and maybe with not much work) you can probably find many skeletons like this one, such as materials used in products or how something otherwise has a negative impact, for instance it would seem what it takes to keep Vegas in green and in lights will have some impact. But if the Venitian did in fact remove shark fin soup (and could be placing themselves at a competitive disadvantage in doing so) then it would seem this rather simple action is in the grasp of others also out there.

#19 ebonites

ebonites

    Triggerfish

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:USA

Posted 30 January 2008 - 06:41 PM

I believe there's a tremendous incentive for most gambling establishments to NOT remove the soup without legislation. Removing the dish would truly challenge ecological commitment as the targeted patrons have a great propensity to gamble and feast...90% of all Chinese tourists to the US make their way to Las Vegas (as stated on destination-macau.com). More on this from the same site:

"The Macau experience is changing the way Vegas treats the Asian gambler...the Chinese are the highest and best quality players in the world, so they’ll have preference."

"Richard Chen, executive chef for Wynn Las Vegas’ Wing Lei restaurant said a family could spend more than US$20,000 on a Chinese New Year dinner."

After looking at those statements and statistics, I would think it's also necessary to advance broad based actions advocating laws for a complete moratorium on shark fisheries, tournaments, and all shark products. Many shark species are already functionally extinct (dusky, hammerhead, tiger, etc.).

#20 AMW

AMW

    Manta Ray

  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 420 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Los Angeles
  • Interests:Boxing, English Premier League, SCUBA, aqua-culturing SPS and LPS, yoga

Posted 24 February 2008 - 12:12 PM

I've never been a fan of Las Vegas. It does not surprise me that shark fin soup is on the menu at restaurants on the strip because "we cater to a wide variety of people". To me this simplistic justification translates to: what ever it takes to increase our profits even if it is at the expense of an apex predator, the shark. Oh, and of course don't forget to gamble after you dine with us...